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A STORY OF MODERN LIFE 



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THE / n / 



WYNDHAM FAMILY 

^ §torg of Poitirn fife. 



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THE AUTHOR OF "MOUNT ST. LAWRENCE. 



IN TWO VOLUMES. 
VOL. II. 



LONDON : 

BURNS & OATES, 17, PORTMAN STREET, 

P0RT3IAN SQUARE. 

1876. 



/ 



WTMAN AND SOJfS, PEINTEKS, 

GEEAT QtJEEK STEEET, LINCOLN'S-INN FIELDS, 

LONDON, W,C. 






CONTENTS Of VOLUME II. 



Chap. Page 

XXVI. Mistaken Conclusions 279 

XXVII. The little World below 294 

XXVIII. To Richmond and Bask 310 

XXIX. Appkehensions and Consultations . . . 326 

XXX. Divers Communications 33& 

XXXI. The Dinner at Madame D'Hericourt's . . 353 
XXXII. Gertrude's Weakness 373 

XXXIII. A Dismissal and a Proposal .... 387 

XXXIV. Discomforts and Disappointments . , , 407 
XXXV. The Dinner Party 417 

XXXVI. The Concert and the Dance .... 434 

XXXVII. Family Jars 446 

XXXVIII. Dupes and Victims 458 

XXXIX. Forsaken and Forsaking 469 

XL. Flight and Pursuit 478 

XLI. Kate Selden 487 

XLII. The Retu-rn 504 

XLIII. The lost One found 514 

XLIV. Conclusion 535 



THE WYXDHAM FAMILY. 279 

CHAPTER XXYI. 

MISTAKEN CONCLUSIONS. 

Mrs. Wyndham was sitting at her accounts. She was in 
the habit of paying her house bills monthly, and was fore- 
stalling the settling day, because, at the end of the week, her 
time would be so much occupied by the approaching party. 
To do Mrs. Wyndham justice, she was punctual in paying 
butchers, bakers, grocers, coal-merchants, and the like. I 
will not be so sure that she did not allow dressmakers' and 
milliners' bills to run on for an indefinite length of time^ 
but then dressmakers and milliners who serve the fashionable 
world ai'e very accommodating in this respect, and, as it is 
not easy to credit them with any special generosity, we may 
suppose that they know how to realize the interest of their 
money by higher charges, and prefer your not seeing too 
often what you owe them, lest you should be less disposed 
to run up a long bill. But Mrs. Wyndham knew that if 
you leave yoiu' house bills unpaid when Christmas comes 
round, a report is apt to get about that you are in straitened 
circumstances. She might have paid them regularly at 
Christmas, it is true, and this would have been sufficient to 
save reputation; but the sum total would have been so large 
that M^r. Wyndham would have grumbled terribly ; when 
they were distributed over twelve months, he was not so 
much alarmed, and in consequence did not grumble so much 
As a rule, he did grumble always, more or less, when the 
pay-day came. For this, however, his wife was prepared^ 
and bore it with a cheerfulness which had its reward — in 
that the matter made less impression on his mind, and he 
had forgotten all about his annoyance a few hours later. 
" Men think much less than women do," was Emma's 



280 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

sapient remark to her motlier that very morning with 
reference to this subject. "It is better never to explain or 
justify ; for either they do not listen to half you say, or are 
so bored that they get cross with you — both, most likely. 
Men, in fact, think very little." 

" They think of other things," said her mother. " Your 
father thinks of what is going on in the House of Com- 
mons, of the Ministry — whether they are likely to stay in 
or go out — and so forth." 

"And to what purpose, I should like to know," retorted 
Emma. " All his thinking goes for nothing." 

" The collective thought of Parliament goes for a great 
deal ; his goes to form an item." 

" Not a bit of it, Mama. Government is a mere scramble 
for power between parties ; I heard Papa himself say so the 
other day. If anybody is simple enough to think that 
Members of Parliament sit there like so many Roman 
senators, gravely debating, and ready to sacrifice themselves 
for their country, then, I can only say, they are very simple. 
Not but that I imagine it was much the same in all times ; 
only things look grander when they happened centuries ago, 
because we know so little about them." 

" I suppose matters were managed always pretty nearly 
in the same way," replied Mrs. Wyndham, who was not 
strong in history. 

"Very likely," said Emma; "because men were always 
the same. I have the very lowest possible opinion of men.'^ 

" That is very odd, my dear Emma," rejoined her mother^ 
"for you do not seem to dislike men so very much when 
you are dancing and flirting with your partners." 

" They are only good to dance and flirt with," replied 
Emma, who was in special ill-humour with all mankind — 
or rather, menkiud — that morning ; and with this observa- 
tion she left her mother to her accounts. 
■ Mrs. Wyndham was herself not in prime good-humour. 



MISTAKEN CONCLUSIONS. 281 

A succession of petty vexations had created a sort of raw 
in the temper, on which any fresh annoyance rubbed very 
uncomfortably. The bills Avere high. They were high in 
detail, and, when added up, they were still higher than the 
height in detail had led her to expect. She reckoned up 
her sum again, beginning from the top, in hopes of dis- 
covering some error. Then she did not succeed in arriving 
at quite the same result as when she had added up from the 
bottom. Weariness was now joined to dissatisfaction, and she 
began to feel positively savage with all these various trades- 
men who were ruthlessly sending in their bills, although 
they did so by her own express desire. When she had 
arrived at this stage she sent for Tyrell. 

The cook's mild face soon appeared at the door. ''What 
do you make that column come to 1 " said the mistress, 
dryly, handing her the book. 

Tyrell ran her eye up the page, and replied, " The same 
as you have entered it, ma'am." 

" You did it too quickly for you to be certain. Just add it 
up again from the top ." Tyrell did as she was directed, and 
arrived at the same result. The sum was correct. " The 
bills are immense this month," said Mrs. Wyndham. 

" There has been a good deal of company," replied 
Tyrell. 

"Now, for instance," continued her mistress, "take the 
one item of butter : the butter bill is monsti-ous. I cannot 
make out how all that was got through ; not up-stairs, I 
am sure." 

" There has been the usual quantity consumed in the 
kitchen," replied the cook, unmoved by the inuendo, — " half 
a pound each ; that is the weekly allowance. But I was 
going to observe that there was a good deal of confectionery 
made this month. There were two dinners, and then the 
cakes and puffs for the refreshment-table at the party. You 
do not wish me to put lard in the pastry." 



282 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

" Certainly not." 

" And it takes a good deal of butter to make pastry 
rich." 

" But it is not the butter bill only ; every bill is high." 

" Nothing is wasted, I can assure you, ma'am." 

" I fear this next month will be an expensive one, too. 
By the bye, I must remind you again about Saturday. M.. 
Pattin will manage the dinner and pi'epare the entrees him- 
self ; but, of course, the vegetables and commoner things will 
be done by you and Mary ; and pray do look after that girl. 
She cannot be trusted by herself, and Mr. Wyndham is- 
most particular about this dinner." 

*' I will pay every attention," said Mrs. Tyrell. " Mary, 
however, improves a little, but has a good deal still to learn ;, 
and, besides, girls generally require to be looked after." 

" But why am I obliged to have a succession of young 
ignorant girls 1 " 

" Of course you could have a more experienced and 
older kitchen-maid, if you preferred that, ma'am ; but 
then " 

" She would want higher wages, you mean." 

" She would expect higher wages, particularly in London." 

" But these girls learn their business at last, I take it for 
granted." 

" If they have any ability they do," replied Tyrell, with- 
out hazarding any special opinion as regarded Mary. 

" And then, as soon as they know something, they ask to 
have their wages raised, or they leave you," continued Mrs. 
Wyndham. " It is very ungrateful, very — after you have 
had them in the rough and trained them." Mrs. Wyndham 
quite overlooked the fact that the girl, while in the rough,, 
as she called it, had received proportionately low wages ; so 
that no great debt of gratitude had been running up on 
either side. 

"They hear that others of their own age are getting 



MISTAKEN CONCLUSIONS. 283 

higher wages," rejoined Mrs. Tyrell, " and they are, I know^ 
sometimes in too great a hurry to change, which is vexa- 
tious ; but they have their bread to make, poor girls, so one 
cannot blame them much for wishing to better themselves." 

*•' So you think," replied Mrs. Wyndham, tartly. '' Of 
course you take the servants' side in the question." Mrs- 
Wyndham, though she valued Tp-ell in a general way, 
usually got out of patience with her when they had to 
exchange many words ; for, with all Tyrell's gentleness and 
the total absence of self-justification, whatever fault might 
be found with herself personally, there was a kind of mild 
independence about her w^hen dealing with her employers, 
of which Mrs. Wyndham was conscious, and which she dis- 
liked far more than any ordinary exhibition of temper, or 
some other common fault. This latent independence of 
spirit chafed Mrs. Wyndham's pride, which a vulgar defect 
would not have done. 

As usual, Tyrell made no response to her mistress's sharp 
observation. Perhaps the latter thought she had been a 
trifle hasty, so proceeded in a pleasanter tone to give direc- 
tions for some supper on their return from Richmond. " It 
is such lovely weather that we shall like the evening diive,' 
she said, " and shall perhaps not be at home till half-past ten 
or even eleven, but the cold meat will do at supper ; so 
nothing will require to be prepared in the way of a hot dish. 
I mention this because T have thought it a good opportunity 
to send you, along with Rachel and Mary, to the play. 
R-oper and Bowles w^ent the other day ; they will attend to 
us when we are back from Richmond, which will, of course, 
be before you are at home again." 

" I am much obliged to you, ma'am," replied Tyrell, " for 
your kind thoughts of me, but I must beg you to excuse me. 
I do not wish to go to the play." 

" Nonsense ! You mean, I suppose, that the play does not- 
arause you." 



284 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

" I do not wish to go to the play." 

" But / wish you to go." rejoined Mrs. Wyndham, 
sharply. " How can I send those two girls by themselves? 
I know my duty better than that, if you do not. Two girls 
at that sort of place without a man to take care of them, 
or a woman of a steady age ! Whether or no you like the 
play, Tyrell, you see you cannot be dispensed with ; and I 
think you might put yourself so far out of the way and go 
with a good grace, when you see you are wanted — ah ! I 
guess what it is," she said, as a sudden thought struck her ; 
*' you do not like going with those you reckon lower ser- 
vants. You think you demean yourself." 

" I had no such thought, ma'am," replied Mrs. Tyrell, 
earnestly. " God forbid that T should have such a thought, 
or esteem myself better than any one else ! I am ready to 
go anywhere in Rachel's or Mary's company, but I do not 
wish to go to the play." 

"And pray what is your objection, may I ask I Perhaps 
you think yourself too good, and condemn others for 
amusing themselves, and, for what I know, those who send 
them also 1 Pray, Mrs. Tyrell, is that your reason ? Am 
I to understand that you think play-going wicked 1 " 

" I blame no one for going to the play," replied Mrs. 
Tyrell, " but I know that I should myself be doing wrong 
by going. I made a resolution years ago never to enter the 
doors of a theatre again. It was some little sacrifice then ; 
I cannot say that it is any now. I should not have said 
this much, ma'am, had you not required to know my reason 
for declining your kindness." 

" Your reason, rather, for being extremely disobliging. 
And may I ask what strange thing befell you when you 
made this vow about theatres ? " 

" Nothing had befallen me. I was a mere child when I 
was taken to the play. I did not form the resolution to 
which I have alluded until some time later. I never made 



MISTAKEN CONXLUSIOXS. 285 

a vow, but I made such a resolution in tlie presence of 
God as I should not be justified in breaking but for some 
extremely weighty reason." 

" And now that I have heard your account," said Mrs. 
"Wyndham, sucking in her lips, a symptom with her of great 
inward irritation, '^ I will just tell you what is my opinion on 
the subject. You think yourself humble because you are not 
fond of fine dress, and the like, and have a way of talking 
small about yourself, but there are other ways of being 
proud, and much more offensive ways, if I am not much 
mistaken. Did it ever occur to you to suspc it yourself of 
spiritual pride 1 My notion is that you are full of it, and 
this is a specimen. Now you know what I have to say on 
the subject." 

" And for what you have said, I owe you the warmest 
thanks, ma'am," replied Tyrell. " Few will speak as frankly 
as you have done, and warn others of the dangers which 
surround them within as well as without. No one needs 
this caution more than I do." 

Mrs. Wyndham looked up a little surprised. The face 
of Tyrell was not merely calm and unruffled, but it 
wore an expression of serene joy. Had Mrs. Wyndham 
seen a cloud of discontent on the brow of her servant, it 
would have been no more than she would have expected — 
some exhibition of temper was the natural thing when 
taxed with so serious a fault as spiritual pride ; and, so long 
as no positive impertinence had been elicited, I rather think 
that a little commonplace anger would have gone far to 
reconcile her to the offender. But the speech and the face 
were alike unintelligible to her, and, being so, excited her 
displeasure instead of serving to modify it. She had, more- 
over, an indistinct impression that some assumption of 
superiority was implied under this show of humility, and 
this was altogether too much for her to endure from one in 
Tyrell's position. Accordingly, after bestowing upon her a 



286 THE -VVYNDHAM FAMILY. 

fixed and would-be withering look, she said, " I don't 
believe you," and forthwith began scratching at her accounts 
and whispering to herself, as if no one was present. Tyrell 
remained standing where she was, and presently Mrs. 
Wyndham looked up again. There was still the same 
joyous serenity on the countenance before her, though per- 
haps somewhat heightened and a degree more radiant. " I 
have nothing mo}-e to say ; you can go," said the mistress ; 
and then Tyrell went. 

Mrs. Wyndham tried to think she had Avon a victory and 
given her cook a good set-down, but, truth to say, she felt 
much more as if Tyrell had got the better of her, and 
this made her furious — so far as her gentility would 
permit. 

*' "What is the matter, Mama'?" asked Emma, who entered 
the room a few minutes after the close of the interview just 
related. " Your face is all in a flame." 

" That woman puts me beyond myself" 

" What woman ? Tyrell, do you mean ? I saw her 
coming up to you." 

'^ Yes, Tyrell " ; and then Mrs. Wyndham related the dia- 
logue, not, indeed, wilfully distorting facts, but giving such 
emphasis to the words spoken by the cook as, in her estima- 
tion, were interpretative of the spirit in which they were 
tittered. 

" Set her up, indeed ! " said Emma ; " she is too good to 
go to the play, is she ? Well, I am not much surprised ; I 
always thought she was a stupid bigot." 

" And then that look, and the affecting to thank me for 
taxing her with pride ! " 

" What was the look like, Mama ? I wish I had seen it. 
I cannot fancy Tyrell getting up an insolent face." 

" It was not an insolent face exactly, Emma, though I 
think it was caused by an insolent feeling ; it was more as 
if she was up in the skies, and cared nothing for what I 



MISTAKEN CONCLUSIONS. 287 

could say, and did not even care to tell me as niiicb, I can- 
not describe the look." 

" How very funny ! Gertrude thinks Tyrell is a saint^ 
and this she would say accounted for - her strange be- 
haviour." 

" If saints are like that/' said Mrs. Wyndham, *' all I 
can say is, I do not like a saint, and specially do not wish to 
have one for my servant. I have a gi-eat mind to part with 
her." 

" I do not think I vrould do that, Mama. You coidd not 
well allege as a reason for parting with a serA-ant that she 
refused to go to the play, and thanked you for telling her of 
her faults. Besides, it is just in the middle of summer? 
and not the best time for replacing her. When the season 
is over, you will have a fair excuse for sending her away 
quietly, for Papa is always complaining, and wants a more 
accomplished performer. You could tell her this." 

Mrs. Wyndham was always disposed to listen to Emma's 
advice, and was peculiarly accessible to reasons of a practical 
order. She accordingly cooled doA\Ti by degi'ees, and ad- 
mitted the justice of her daughter's observations. " But 
what am I to do about this play, Emma ? I suppose I shall 
have to send Roper with those girls another day." 

" She will not go with the lower servants, Mama. I am 
pretty sure she would not go with Rachel ; and I am cer- 
tain she would scorn to escort Mary." 

" What a bother all these servants' etiquettes are ! Per- 
fectly ridiculous ! " 

" I don't know that," said Emma, who was rather in a 
contentious mood. " They have their little world as we 
have our big one. I think I should be much of Roper's 
opinion in her place ; I suppose we are all worldly." 

*• I suppose we are," replied her mother, heaving a sigh, 
but Avhether for her own worldliness, or for the dilemma 
in w*hich she was placed by her servants' etiquettes, I can- 



288 



THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 



not say. "At any rate, they know nothing about the 
proposed amusement," she resumed ; '• so the delay will not 
matter." 

" Oh, but they do know," rejoined Emma ; *' I told 
Kachel myself. She will be mad ; and I dare say lumpy 
Mary will not like it, but she will submit. Tyrell quite 
sits upon that girl, Rachel tells me." 

" I am sure she would sit upon me, if I saw much of 
her." 

" Only you would kick, Mama, and Mary only grunts, 
I imagine. But suppose you send these two damsels next 
week with James to take care of them. They will like him 
much better as a chaperon, I'll be bound, than that demure 
Tyrell." 

" Send James with them ?" said Mrs. Wyndham doubt- 
ingly. 

" Yes, he would do admirably. I am sure he is a very 
sober youth. When on duty, at least, he looks propriety 
personified." 

" I will think about it after we come back from Rich- 
mond," replied Mrs. Wyndham. 

" Oh, that stupid Richmond ! " exclaimed Emma ; " I 
wish it was done and over." 

" Why, I thought you agreed with me the other day that 
it was the best thing we could do to occupy and amuse 
your uncle." 

" So it is, I suppose ; but it is such a bore going to 
Richmond, — everything is a bore " ; and, with that sweep- 
ing judgment on things in general, Emma left her mother 
to her own reflections. 

" I am not surprised," said Mrs. Roper, when her mis- 
tress had relieved herself by relating to her maid what had 
just occurred, while the latter was helping her to put on 
her bonnet and shawl — Mrs. Wyndham, of course, never 
did these things for herself — " I am not surprised at all. 



MISTAKEN CONCLUSIONS. 289 

I should not have expected Mrs. Tyrell would go to the 
theater." 

" Why not 1 " 

" Law ! Ma'am, because she is so queer about them sort 
of things, and a many more besides." 

" What other things is she odd about 1 " 

" Well, ma'am, she has no ideas about the way of behav- 
ing in families of any gentility. Would you believe it, 
ma'am, when first she came, she did not like sojourning " 
— Mrs. Roper, it may be presumed, meant "adjourning" 
— " after the hall dinner to the housekeeper's room with Mr. 
Bowles and myself 1 She thought it looked proud. My idea 
is that she was in some second-rate place before she came 
here, or in some very small one, where there was no house- 
keeper's room." 

" She was living with a family which had resided on the 
Continent for some time. I have heard that those distinc_ 
tioDS of class among servants are not kept up there — 
not even in the best families," said Mrs. Wyndham with 
emphasis. 

" Very likely, ma'am ; of course they do not understand 
things there as well as we do here." 

Emma, as we have seen, was in a humour that day to 
vote everything a bore ; so she refused to drive out in the 
carriage. She had to practise, — that was her standing 
excuse at present, whenever she did not like what was pro- 
posed to her ; Gertrude therefore was her mother's sole 
companion that afternoon. Emma was, in fact, discon- 
tented at hearing and knowing nothing about her 
lover ; and, though clearly he had no prudent means 
of communicating with her, she felt dissatisfied with him, 
and out of temper with the whole world in conse- 
quence. Meanwhile she did not hurry down to prac- 
tise. She thought her uncle was in the drawing-room ; 
accordingly, she would wait till he moved down to 

u 



290 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

the lower floor, which he probably would, unless detained 
above by the presence of some one to whom he could talk. 
So she settled her hair and listened for the creaking of 
Uncle John's boots. 

At this moment Rachel made her appearance, with a 
mysterious air, and her hand under her apron, from which 
she drew it forth after closing the door. " A letter for you, 
ma'am ; " so saying she handed it to her young mistress. 
" It was not the Captain who gave it to me," added Rachel, 
proving by this observation that she very well knew who 
Emma's correspondent was. ** It was left here by a gentle- 
man I don't know ; though T think I see him at the party 
along with the Captain. He rang just after the carriage 
drove off ; so I went to answer the door, James being 
out." 

"What was he like?" asked Emma, with a flushed 
countenance, her intense eagerness causing her to forget 
her dignity. 

" He had sandy hair, and was not near so well-looking as 
the Captain ; not well-looking at all I should say ; middle 
height and plain dressed, except two or three rings on his 
fingers, 1 dare say to show off his white hands, which was 
the best thing about him." 

Then Emma understood that Mr. Jardine was the mes- 
senger, and, moreover, that Mr. Jardine knew all about 
her love-affair with his friend. 

Rachel was aware that she must leave her young lady 
to herself while perusing her letter, so reluctantly departed. 
The letter, which Emma tore open as soon as she w^as gone, 
was short. It ran as follows : — 

" My own dearest, 

" Believe nothing you hear. I have an enemy — may 
I not venture to say we have an enemy ? — in the bosom of 
your own family, who has calumniated me ; but I can 



MISTAKEN CONCLUSIONS. 291 

explain all ; only trust me, and be true to me, as I shall be 
true to you till death. 

" Your devoted 

" Frederick." 

" Oh, yes, I will be true to him ! " exclaimed Emma, " I 
will never credit a word against him ; " and then she kissed 
the precious lines. But who was the enemy to their happi- 
ness ? On that point there could be no question ; the enemy 
was her brother Algernon. Emma's thoughts never adverted 
for a moment to her uncle. She had not seen the introduc- 
tion and his extraordinary demeanour on the occasion, and 
had never connected Captain Baines's hasty departure with 
her uncle's entrance. The enemy who had calumniated her 
lover was Algernon, of course ; but her Frederick could 
explain all — explain what 1 Oh, about being fast — that was 
the calumny. He was not fast, or not too fast. She would 
believe nothing to his prejudice, she was more than satisfied 
with him, but it was evident to her now that her mother's 
mind had been poisoned by her treacherous brother. That 
accounted for the alteration in her manner which she 
noticed during the late visit. All was as clear as day ; and 
when she thought of the mischief thus done to her dearest 
interests, she felt that she should be scarcely able to speak 
to Algernon when next they met. On the whole, however, 
the letter had been a source of great relief and pleasure to 
her, and it completely restored her to good humour. Even 
the Richmond expedition no longer wore the same oppres- 
sive aspect. All was by comparison couleur de rose. One 
thing embarrassed her : how was she to reply, and assure her 
lover of her fidelity ? There was no date to the letter, and. 
although she knew the number of his lodgings in Piccadilly, 
she felt it would be too strong a measure to trust Bachel 
with a letter for the post bearing Captain Baines's address. 
She had reconciled herself to the passive act of receiving 

u 2 



292 THE WYXDHAM FAMILY. 

private communications through her attendant, but she 
recoiled, at present at least, from venturing on any active 
step with her knowledge and connivance. So the Captain 
must be content to take things for granted ; he must be 
aware of the difficulties of her position, and had no reason, 
therefore, either to complain of her silence or to misinterpret 
it. Then Emma put the letter in her pocket, and went 
down-stairs to practise. 

She had forgotten all about Uncle John by this time ; 
however, she found the room vacant, and, placing herself at 
the pianoforte, ran her fingers over the keys. The window 
was thrown up, for it was a warm summer's-day ; and what 
between the outer sounds thus admitted and that which 
she was extracting from the instrument, she failed to notice 
a knock at the front door, and the drawing-room door 
opened before she was aware that any one had entered the 
house. She recognized at once the step and the hand ; it 
was her brother ; she looked hastily round, and there was 
Algernon himself, the enemy to her peace, standing before 
her. Emma had thought that she would not be able to 
speak to him, so angry had his conduct made her, but the 
sight of him modified, not her resentment, but her conse- 
quent behaviour when put to the test. The knowledge 
that we have something to conceal brings down our pride, 
makes us fearful, and indisposes us to run a tilt against 
any one. Besides, Algernon's off-hand manners rendered it 
very difficult to adopt any determined or dignified plan in 
his regard. He entered on this occasion with his usual 
careless and engaging smile. He wished to be good- 
natured, for such was his disposition ; and now that the 
Baines affiiir was disposed of, as he believed, he was de- 
sirous to do all in his power to oblige his sister, and rub out 
the recollection of the few uncomfortable words which had 
passed between them. 

" Em," he said, " I have just called to know if you would 



MISTAKEN COXCLUSIOXS. 293 

like to ride in the Park to-day ; if so, I am at your service. 
Mustapha vrUl be jumping out of his skin j he has not been 
out for a week." 

" They exercise him," replied Emma ; " but anyhow, I 
cannot go out to-day. I have stayed at home to practise." 

" All right," said her brother. "You go to Richmond 
to-morrow, I believe ; should you want me any ether day 
this week, just drop me a line if I do not happen to 
look in." 

'' I think I shall be too busy for the rest of this week to 
ride," replied Emma ; " but do not put yourself out of 
the way about me, Algernon, for Minny Yincent rides 
every day, so would chaperon me at any time. This leaves 
you free." 

Emma delivered herself of this speech in a tone not the 
least like that which was usual to her ; it had a touch of 
coldness in it, coupled with a certain embarrassment, as if 
the speaker had hardly decided what manner to assume ; 
which was the fact. Then Algernon knew very well that 
Emma had not forgiven him. 

" She must get over it as best she may. I have done 
my best and can do no more." Such was his inward 
remark as, whistling an air from the last new opera, he 
descended the staircase. The loud closing of the hall-door 
soon apprized Emma that he was gone. Would she have 
believed, but a month ago, that she should ever be on such 
terms with her dearly-loved Algernon ? 



294 



THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 



CHAPTER XXVII. 



THE LITTLE WORLD BELOW. 



The weather on the following day was as propitious as.could 
be desired for an excursion, and the party for Richmond 
drove from the door shortly after twelve o'clock — the plan 
being a stroll in the Park on arriving, to be followed by an 
early dinner at the hotel, which Mrs. Wyndham inteudedto 
call luncheon, in the futile hope of reducing the probably 
high charge ; then another stroll, to be succeeded by a cup 
of tea ; and lastly, return in the dusk to supper at home. 
Much pleasure was perhaps not expected by any of the 
Wyndham family from what wore the outward form of a 
pleasure-party, but it would dispose of a day ; and this was 
the main object. 

The carriage, then, drove off, in a glaring meridian sun • 
Emma making loud complaints, from a dread of its effect on 
her complexion, which was as sensitive to extrinsic causes as 
was her temper. The hall-door was closed, and the house 
was left in the possession of the servants, the little world 
below. Tt wanted nearly an hour to their dinner-time. 
Mr. Bowles, the butler, was taking his ease in an arm-chair 
in the housekeeper's room, and Mrs. Roper, who had just 
come down from executing the office of equipping her 
mistress, was fidgeting about in a somewhat desceuvre state. 
*• Well, they are off, Mr. Bowles," she said. 

" Yes, Mrs. Roper, they are off, and we are left to enjoy 
what the mistress calls a banian day." 

" What is that 1 " asked the lady's-maid, taking a seat. 

" I am not at liberty to say," responded Mr. Bowles ; that 
being his habitual would-be funny way of expressing igno- 
rance of any matter. 



THE LITTLE WORLD BELOW. 295 

" Law ! Mr. Bowles ; tlien, why do you use a word you 
don't understand 1 " 

"Mrs. Roper, I do understand the meaning of the word; 
only I cannot tell you its etumnology. A bauian day, I take 
it, is a day when the system is allowed to repose. I heard 
Mr. Wyndham say once that it was a day on which sailors 
had no meat." 

" I fancy that is not a sort of rest you would relish much, 
Mr. Bowles. You like to keep your digestion employed, I 
suspect." 

"Not more than others I could mention, Mrs. Roper ; but 
our mistress uses the word differently. When she and the 
young ladies don't go out at nights, she calls it ' a banian 
day.' You see, with the gentlefolks, amusement ls their 
work. When there is a gi^eat many balls and parties in the 
week they say they have a great deal to do ; so it is a sort 
of rest of the system when they stay at home an odd day. 
That, Mrs. Roper, is what learned people call a figure of 
speech." 

" That's beyond me,'^ said the lady's-maid ; " but I rather 
think my lady meant it was a fast from pleasure when she 
stayed at home. Dear me ! they never want to rest, ball- 
goers don't." 

" Rest is sweet," observed Mr. Bow^les, heaving a sigh. 
Perhaps no one in the house needed less resting or recruit- 
ing than did the butler ; beyond waiting at .table, playing 
valet to his master, who had not half so many wants as had 
the amiable partner of his life, paying an occasional visit to 
the wine-cellar, to bring up a fresh bottle, and making 
believe to busy himself for a portion of the morning in his 
pantry, Mr. Bowles did little or nothing. Yet, to believe 
him, no one was more heavily charged with work than him- 
self ; however, as he was in the main a good-natured sort of 
man, this delusion was tolerated by his fellow-servants, with 
whom he was rather a favourite. Butlers are grand men, 



296 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

and think themselves so ; tliey must therefore be humoured ; 
and if they are neither drunken, domineering, nor abusive, 
the rest of the household have good reason to consider them- 
selves in luck, and to condone smaller faults. Mr. Bowles 
was neither drunken, domineering, nor abusive, so was 
liked ; specially by Mrs. Roper. 

"There is not much good, I am thinking," remarked that 
personage, " in having a ' bunion ' day, or whatever you call 
it, if no use can be made of it. My lady was quite agree- 
able to the two girls going to the theater along with Mrs. 
Tyrell to-night, and then Mrs. Tyrell goes and upsets all by 
her scruples." Mrs. Roper, though not personally interested 
in the projected plan of amusement, was as much put out at 
its failure as were the two girls, for she had been looking to 
a snug tete-ct-tete with Mr. Bowles while they were at the 
Haymarket. 

" Every one has got a right to his or her opinion, I hold," 
replied Mr. Bowles, oracularly. *' If so be Mrs. Tyrell has 
scruples, she has a perfect right to enjoy them, say I." 

" Law ! Mr. Bowles, enjoy a scruple ! a pretty sort of 
enjoyment, particularly when it makes a person so contraary 
and disobliging." 

" If so be a party does not wish to frequent playhouses " 
— " if so be " was a favourite form of expression with Mr. 
Bowles — " I cannot see why he or she should be driven 
there. You, yourself, Mrs. Roper, I will be bound, would 
not have gone to the Haymarket with Rachel under one 
wing and Mary under the other." 

That was a poser — Mrs. Roper felt that it was a poser — 
but she had an answer ready very soon. " No, Mr. Bowles, 
it is quite true I would not have gone with those two girls, 
and my lady would not have thought of asking me " — there 
was always a great stress on the " my " when Mrs. Roper 
was dignified, and too dignified she always was to call Mrs. 
"Wyndham by so ordinary an appellation as her mistress — 



THE LITTLE WORLD BELOW. 297 

" but then my objection would have been nothing so pal try- 
as a scruple — it would have been grounded on propriety. 
Mrs. Tyrell laughs at proprieties." 

"In short," said Mr. Bowles, "it comes to this: you 
would have been too proud, or too high, to be seen in such 
company — 1 don't blame you a bit for that; Mrs. Tyrell, 
she is not too proud, but she has got into her head that the 
playhouse is the devil's house, I suppose, and so is afraid to 
go — well, I don't blame her neither ;" and Mr. Bowles drew 
another long, puffy sigh, and asked when the dinner would 
be ready. 

" It wants more than half an hour still," replied his com- 
panion ; and, not finding Mr. Bowles in a very accessible 
mood, she took herself off to perform the process called by 
servants of the second order " cleaning " themselves, but 
which Mrs. Roper of course styled " dressing." She did 
not actually dress, however — that is, she did not change her 
gown at that early hour — she only tidied herself, put on 
another cap, looked at herself in the glass, washed her 
hands, and then, descending the first flight, took a second 
glance at herself in Mrs. Wyndham's cheval glass, a look 
which was apparently satisfactory, for she smirked a silent 
approval, and continued her descent to the lower regions. 

Mrs. Koper might have been from forty to forty-five years 
of age, had dark hair, very little touched by grey, good 
decided black eyes, and rather a sallow complexion, relieved, 
however, by the colour in her cheeks. People might have 
supposed she had been handsome when younger, but it was 
not so ; and she was perhaps a better-looking woman now 
than she had been at twenty-five. She had lived about ten 
years with the Wyndhams, having previously acted as maid 
to an old lady, who had died and bequeathed her an annuity 
of twenty pounds. Mr. Bowles might be fifty, but he had 
not worn as well as had Mrs. Roper, nor was he nearly as 
active. Though not a drunken man, he had always indulg;ed 



298 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

himself a good deal both in the eating and the drinking line, 
as is not unusual with butlers. He was disposed to corpu- 
lency, and, though he did not positively limp, he had that 
peculiar stiff way of fetching up one leg which points to a 
former fit of the gout — perhaps he had suffered in this 
way, but he never owned it. He had lived about two years 
and a-half in his present situation, having been butler pre- 
viously in a large house. He had a little peculium of his 
own, besides a pension, to which he occasionally alluded, 
although he ignored his gout. For Mr. Bowles, in fact, was 
meditating retirement from service whenever he could meet 
with a suitable partner — a project which he had also hinted 
at in not very obscure terms ; and, being thus, as it is called, 
on his i^romotion, he naturally wished to make the best of 
himself. INlrs. Roper thought that he would be no bad jparti 
for herself; for she, too, was getting weary of service, and 
had visions of keeping a lodging-house at some fashionable 
watering-place, if only she could realize a sufficient capital 
to start with, and secure a respectable spouse ; for marriage 
she reckoned would add dignity and solidity to her position, 
besides furniiiihing the needed addition to means. Mr. 
Bowles had at first seemed not to dislike Mrs. Boper ; 
whether he thought of her as the possible future Mrs. 
Bowles, I cannot say. Mrs. Boper did think that he enter- 
tained the notion ; but then it must be observed that the 
butler did not like the then cook ; neither did Mrs. Boper. 
A common dislike is a certain bond of union, and the cir- 
cumstance naturally threw them a good deal into each 
other's society, as the other compeer was disagreeable to 
both of them. So the lady's-maid cultivated her oppor- 
tunities, and thought she made very satisfactory progress. 
Then the cook was dismissed, and Tyrell came. 

This change at first caused little difference ; she was a 
stranger, and, though always courteous and gracious, was 
not talkative. Mrs. Boper complained that she was never 



THE LITTLE WORLD BELOW. 299 

what she called cosy and comfortable. Mr. Bowles grunted, 
and said nothing. But, after awhile, a visible drawing-off 
in her supposed suitor could not but strike Mrs. Boper. He 
began also to take the cook's part in a quiet way, of which 
we have just seen an instance, and was often to be seen in 
the kitchen at unusual hours, when there seemed no excuse 
of business to account for his presence. He would sit by 
the fire while Tyrell was engaged in her work, and con- 
sequently bestowing little atteution upon any one but her 
aide-de-cam]), Mary, who needed a great deal. On these 
occasions, Mr. Bowles himself rarely said anything beyond 
uttering an occasional monosyllable ; and, alter spending 
some time in this way, he would take his departure. Mrs. 
Roper noted all this ; and of one tl)ing she was certain : 
Mr. Bowles took less notice of herself; but could it be 
possible that the uninteresting Tyrell had supplanted her 1 
She could not bring herself to believe such a thing ; and 
undoubtedly the symptoms of a i)reference which did not 
amount to more than I have stated were by no means 
decisive. Still Mrs. Boper was uncomfortable, and, if she 
had known all, not without cause. Whether or no Mr. 
Bowles had ever thought of Mrs. Boper, he did think of 
]\Irs. Tyrell. He thought she w^ould make a very comfort- 
able wife ; and Mr. Bowles liked to be made comfortable. 
She was quiet and modest, and had not too much tongue : 
this was a recommendation, for Mr. Bowles gather liked to 
l^rose, and be listened to, himself. She had a good temper, 
which was nearly everything, he considered, in the matri- 
monial relation, and then, last but not least, Mr. Bowles 
had a high respect for her. He was sure she was a very 
good woman, and this goodness went to complement the 
merit of good temper in his eyes. I have said " last," but 
I think there was another incentive : Mr. Bowles was 
not certain that Tyrell would accept him. This added 
difficulty and doubt to the enterprise, which often heighten 



300 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

a liking ; and it added also just so much animation to 
Mr. Bowles's preference as was compatible with his some- 
what heavy nature. 

The servants' dinner being now on the table, they all 
took their places. 

" There is something nice under that cover, I will 
engage," observed Mr. Bowles, as Mrs. Tyrell finished 
saying grace. 

" An Irish stew," replied Mrs. Tyrell. " T think you like 
Irish stew, Mr. Bowles." 

"It is an excellent dish," rejoined Mr. Bowles, " but 
pretty well excluded from the tables of the gentry now ; 
when it is banished from the hall too, I think I shall retire 
into private life." 

*' With some one to cook it for you, I suppose," said 
Rachel, with a significant laugh. Kachel had grown very 
forward since her promotion, and mingled in the conversa- 
tion of the higher powers in a way which Boper disliked? 
but tolerated to a certain extent, because she found the girl 
useful to her. 

" With some one to cook it for me, of course," repeated 
Mr. Bowles, who suspected, but did not at all mind, the 
allusion. Needless to say, it was wholly lost upon 
Tyrell. But it was not lost on Roper, who looked very 
black. 

" I must say," she observed, " that I think the dish a 
very coarse one." 

'* And grown decidedly vulgar," added Rachel. 

*' If I had known you disliked Irish stew," said Tyrell, 
addressing the lady's-maid, "you should have had something 
else. However, there is the cold beef." 

"Thank you, Mrs. Tyrell, I shall do very well," replied 
Roper ; and she seemed to be doing very well indeed. " I 
only passed the observation." 

*' ril be bound," continued Mr. Bowles, " that you wou't 



THE LITTLE WORLD BELOW. 301 

give those epicures on Saturday anything half so good as 
this savoury stew." 

" Dear me ! Mr. Bowles," said Roper, " don't you know 
that Mrs. Tyrell is not reckoned to be competent to send 
up a dinner to such gi^eat judges ? We are to have a foreign 
gentleman in — of the name of Patten, I think my lady 
said." 

" Nor am I competent," said Mrs. Tyrell. " A variety of 
dishes will, no doubt, be required of which T am ignorant 
and which I should not make well enough, even if I had the 
receipts." 

" Pshaw ! " exclaimed Mr. Bowles, " those French cooks 
— and some will caU themselves so, and are no more French 
than I am — they turn the place upside down, give them- 
selves no end of airs and graces, and only send to table a few 
kickshaws that no one cares about ; and then look at the 
bills they run up ! I know something about those sort of 
chaps, don't 1 1 Why, they will waste more in a day than 
would feed a quiet family for a month. Bless your heart ! 
those fellows think no more of tossing a bottle of port 
into their soups and sauces than I do of tossing off this 
glass of beer. And as for trouble, why they give more a 
gi'eat deal than they save. I take it you will find this Patten 
a regular clog on your proceedings, eh 1 " and Mr. Bowles 
laughed at his own witticism. 

" The airs and graces we shall have to put up with ! " 
said Mrs. Poper ; "for the waste and expense — them that 
employs them must look to that. As for trouble, we must 
none of us expect to be saved trouble on Saturday. It will 
be sharp work. There will be the dressing of the dinner 
down below, and the dressing the ladies above, and ' such a 
running upstairs and playing on the fiddle ' as never was." 

" It will be awful ! " said Rachel, who really enjoyed the 
prospect much. 

" I don't think there will be much to fag you, Missy," 



302 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

said the butler. " You will be stuck up behind the refresh- 
ment-table, with nothing to do but to pour out tea, admire 
the ladies' dresses, and flatter yourself you are admired by 
the gentlemen." 

" Oh ! Mr. Bowles ; how ill-natured of you to say that ! " 

" Well, I will put the flattery out, and let the passage 
run thus — 'and be admired by the gentlemen' ; does that 
suit you now ? " "Very seldom it was that any one was angry 
with Mr. Bowles, for he never lost his own temper, and 
there was evidently no malice in his little jokes ; so Rachel 
laughed as well as the rest, "/have some reason to grumble," 
he continued, " who will be on my legs stumping about till 
two in the morning at least." 

" Remember, Mr. Bowles, we shall be on our legs, too, 
when we are what you call ' stuck up ' behind the refresh- 
ment-table," said Rachel ; "and standing for a length of time 
is more tiring than walking about — that it is ; isn't it, 
Mrs. Roper?" 

" We shall have enough of both, you may depend, 
Rachel," replied Roper ; "so there's no use talking. My 
lady has been very kind about it, I must say ; for she passed 
the observation this morning that there would be a good 
deal to do, and hoped I should not be tired." 

" That is very cheap kindness, at all events," said Rachel ; 
" however, I am not going to complain of her, for it is not 
Mrs. Wyndham's fault that I had not some amusement 
to-night, to make up for the extra work coming." 

" I am very sorry, Rachel," said Mrs. Tyrell, " to have 
been the cause of disappointment to you and Mary. I am 
sure I am as sorry as you can be." 

Rachel, it will be noted, had never so much as alluded 
to Mary's share in the loss of pleasure, nor did she now. 
She shrugged her shoulders, stuck out her lip, and muttered 
something not very audible, and probably not very agree- 
able. Mary was next her, and caught what she said. 



THE LITTLE WORLD BELOW. 303 

Raising her face from her plate, witli heightened colour 
and her blue eyes glistening with moisture, she now spoke 
for the first time since the dinner had begun. " Don't trouble 
about it, Mrs. Tyrell,'' said the good-natured girl. " I am 
sure, as for me, I don't give it a thought ; and, indeed, I 
had not got a cap ready ; and I dare say Missis will think 
of us some other time." 

Mrs. Tyrell gave her a sweet look of kindness and 
afi'ection, as she said, " I am sure she will, Mary ; and you 
deserve it all the more for bearing your disappointment 
so well." 

" If any one imagines that I am dying of the disappoint- 
ment," said Rachel, " they are quite mistaken." 

" We are under no such apprehension," said the butler 
solemnly. Another laugh went round the table, in which 
Rachel did not this time join. 

" I should care more," said Mary, " if it had been that 
playhouse — I forget its name — which James was talking 
about the other day, and where there were a lot of beautiful 
horses. James see a spangled man fly at full gallop through 
a blazing drum — that must have been grand — and a pony 
drink a cup of tea. I should like to see that." 

" You might see that sort of thing at any fair," observed 
Rachel. " As for me, I like genteel comedy or high 
tragedy." 

Here Mr. Bowles interposed. 

" Gently, gently, with your sweeping assertions, Rachel, 
— I am not alluding to your office by using the word 
' sweepmg,' " he added facetiously — " you might see a 
spangled man and a tea-drinking pony at a fair, it is true, 
but not such horsemanship, and, above all, such horses as 
can be seen at Astley's." 

"It is a very low place, though," said Rachel grampily; 
" and as for your remark about the sweeping, Mr. Bowles, 
I never take a broom in mv hand now." 



304 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

'' Indeed ! " said Mr. Bowles, as if he had never heard 
that important fact before. 

" The company at Astley's is not worth looking at," she 
continued — '' all children, or lower sort of folk ; and at half- 
price the gallery gets unbearable for noise." 

"You have been at this low place, then, I conclude," 
continued her good-humoured tormentor. 

" No, Mr. Bowles ; I wasn't ever there, but others has 
described it. I don't know why you go on that way, Mr. 
Bowles." 

" What way 1 I did not know I was going any way. 
All I know is that I am going to have a second help of 
your excellent stew, Mrs. Tyrell." 

Rachel had now fairly lost the control of her temper; 
and, as she could not venture on a fight with the butler, 
who, she knew besides, was sure to have the best of it, her 
spite concentrated itself on Tyrell and Mary. She was 
angry with the latter for making light of the play grievance, 
and with Tyrell, of course, for the grievance itself. " I 
should certainly have been glad," she observed, resuming 
the vexed and vexatious topic, " to see the new play 
bringing out at the Haymarket, ' The Lover's Leap.' It is 
quite exciting, I am told." 

" That is more in your line, I expect, than the spangled 
fellow's jump through the drum," said the incorrigible 
butler. 

'' Now, don't ! Mr. Bowles; you do take me up so." 

" Better than setting you down, anyhow, I suppose." 

" Law ! Mr. Bowles, you are so witty ; you'll be the 
death of us," exclaimed Boper. 

"But I was going to say," continued the undaunted 
Rachel, who was determined to have her bit of gall out, 
"that it makes all the difference in enjoying oneself, what 
party one goes with. If the party's not congenial, it is 
very damping. When I had turned round — to see Mary's 



THE LITTLE WORLD BELOW. 305 

frouzY cap, and Mrs. Tyrell looking as if she wished us at 
the devil, or thought we was on the high road to him — 
well, that would have been damping to the spirits." 

"My caps are not frouzy," exclaimed Mary, whunpering; 
" no one can say so ! " 

" Eachel," said Mrs. Tyrell, with a gravity bordering on 
severity, "that is not language befitting a Christian woman." 

"You forget yourself, Rachel ; indeed you do," said Mrs. 
Eoper ; " it is not proper, behaving in that rude way to 
Mrs. Tyrell." 

" I do not miud as respects myself," said the cook. 
*' Rachel is disappointed of an amusement ; I am the cause 
of the disappointment, and can make every allowance for a 
little temper; but her language was very unbefitting ; and, 
so long as I sit at this table, I beg it may not be repeated." 

" Hear, hear," said Mr. Bowles emphatically ; " I second 
the motion," 

Rachel felt she had gone too far, and muttered something 
about having meant no ofience to Mrs. Tyrell, nor in- 
tended to say anything improper. " I only meant," she 
said, " that you can't enjoy things well if others with you 
don't." 

" The sentiment was inoffensive, but much too strongly 
put," said Mr. Bowles pompously; "however, as the young 
woman suggests this amendment, and says she meant no 
offence, I have no doubt Mrs. Tyrell will atw least accord 
her the benefit of the doubt, and accept the explanation. 
And now, Mrs. Tyrell, may I without impropriety, and 
without again mentioning the objectionable personage 
whose name comes so unsuitably from the lips of the fair 
sex, and which should never even offend their ears from 
ours — may I ask if it be true that you thoroughly dis- 
approve of the play and of play -going ?" 

" I am very reluctant, Mr. Bowles," replied Tyrell, " to 
intrude my opinion on subjects of this kind; but, as you 

X 



306 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

pointedly ask me, I certainly do believe that the theatre — 
at any rate, such as it is in our day — is a source of evil. I 
am very far, however, from censuring those who, thinking 
otherwise, innocently frequent it as an occasional recreation. 
I could not, and would not, myself go ; that is all I say or 
wish to say." 

" Every one has a perfect right to his or her own view," 
said the oracular Mr. Bowles. " And I go further ; if so 
be any one thinks it wrong to go to the play, I say he or 
she is respectable, and to be respected, for not going. That 
is what I call principle carried out in practice ; and if the 
said individual does not condemn others for differing, who 
has a right to find fault with him or her 1 We can't all 
agree on these points, so we may differ amicably and 
respectfully from eacli other. Why am I to insist on a 
party going to the play, if the party has a scruple 1 I can 
go if I like ; that is all that concerns me. If the party 
had a scruple about cooking my dinner, why, then, I own, 
the thing would assume a different complexion." 

" Suppose my lady had made a point of your going to 
the theatre, Mrs. Tyrell," asked Roper ; " would you have 
gone ] " 

" No, Mrs. Roper, I could not and should not have gone. 
It would have grieved me to disoblige my mistress, but her 
insisting would not have changed my determination." 

" Not if it had lost you your place 1 " 

" Not if it had lost me my place." 

" But, then, you must think you know better than my 
lady ; for she goes very often, and does not consider it at 
all wrong." 

"I do not judge her," replied Mrs. Tyrell; '^ and she 
cannot judge for me. We shall each of us have to answer 
for ourselves, and for all we do, say, or think, to our com- 
mon Master ; but we shall have to answer for ourselves 
alone, and for others only if God has committed the care 



THE LITTLE WORLD BELOW. 307 

of them to us. Certainly I have no such charge with 
respect to niy mistress's conduct — but I really think we 
had better change the conversation. I see no good in 
discussions of this sort." 

*' Mrs. Tyrell is right," said the oracle of the table ; " we 
have had enough of this topic. T am ready for any other 
subject that may be started ; from politics to — what shall 
I say 1 — petticoats." 

" Pray give us your opinion on both subjects, Mr. 
Bowles/' said Mrs. Roper. 

" Well, in politics, I am a Conservative. As respects 
petticoats, I am a Liberal ; that is, I think petticoats ought 
to be liberal in quantity, not skimpy, with just a hunch to 
stick them out at the back. I must, however, except 
trains. I am not liberal in the matter of trains. Retrench- 
ment there, say I. Trains are my antipathy ; and if the 
women would just ask the men what they think, they 
would hear but one opinion." 

" Yet they add greatly to a noble figure," observed the 
lady's maid ; " and they give an air of height where it is a 
trifle wanting. See how well Miss Wyndham looks with 
a train ! If Miss Wyndham was just half an inch taller, 
there would not be a handsomer young lady, nor so hand- 
some a one, in all London. The train just makes her look 
a thought taller." 

"This is Miss Wyndham's third season, I 'think," said 
Bowles. " T wonder she has not gone off yet ; and so many 
admirers as they say she has ! " 

" Gone off ! " 

" Got married, I mean, of course." 

" Miss Wyndham is very particular, I can tell you. It's 
not every one that can please her," said Roper. 

"And then, to be sure, there's papa and mama to please 
besides," added Bowles ; " there's no question of that ; 
and papas and mamas look to the prudent side, 'My 

X 2 



308 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

face is my fortune ' won't do for them. They are apt to be 
stony-hearted when means and so forth are short." 

" Miss Wyndham will never marry for money, / know," 
said Rachel, with a toss of her head j " she is too romantic 
for that." 

"What do you know about the matter?" said Roper 
sharply ; for her patience with her aide-de-camp was not of 
an unlimited character, and this piece of assumption and 
self-importance ruffled her very much. 

After this the conversation flagged ; and Mrs. Roper soon 
terminated the sitting by asking Mrs. Tyrell if they had not 
better sojourn. 

Rachel and Mary were now left alone ; Rachel, however, 
had risen when the upper house had got on its legs, and, 
while its members were sojourning, as Mrs. Roper styled 
the proceeding, to the housekeeper's room, she slipped into 
the back kitchen ; but Mary followed her. In an ordinary 
way Mary was gentle and amiable, and could bear a good 
deal. To this enduring spirit a sluggish nature contributed 
its share ; but she was rather prone to be sulky when 
offended, and was inclined to resentment. Of this resent- 
ment she generally chewed the bitter cud in comparative 
silence ; but there was a point at which she broke down, and 
then she broke out also, without either measure or discretion. 
The " frouzy cap " had proved such a point on this occa- 
sion. It was not the only offence received, but it was the 
crowning offence. "You are the most ill-natured girl I 
know," said the angry and excited kitchen-maid. " You 
think of nothing but yourself, and care for nothing but 
yourself." 

" Tol-de-rol ! what is all this about ? " replied Rachel. 

" You know very well, you do. Don't tell me." 

" I am not going to tell anything ; I really cannot guess 
what you are in all this taking about, unless I have affronted 
you about your cap. What a simpleton you are ! ' 



THE LITTLE WORLD BELOW. 309 

"You just said it to vex me, you jade ; for you know very 
well there is not a word of truth in it." 

" Oh, I am a jade, am 1 1 Shall I tell you what you are, 
Mary ? — a trollopy sloven ; I am not going to eat my words 
— I can tell you that at any rate. You do wear frouzy caps 
— frouzy caps, very frouzy caps — there you have it." A 
pause ensued, prognostic of a coming storm ; then Mary, 
drawing herself up to her full height, which was not very 
imposing, said, " If my caps are not quite so smart as yours, 
Rachel, there is a very good reason for that." 

" You mean my wages is higher. Of course they are 
higher." 

" And if I do not wear such smart caps," continued 
Mary, "at least I can show a good face under what I do 
wear, and look all the world in the face, too, without 
shame." 

" I dare say you can," said Eachel, carelessly, pretending 
to scrutinize some of the crockeiy ; " I never said a word 
against your character." 

" No one can say that I have anything to conceal — like 
some people." 

This was uttered too pointedly to be passed over. " What 
do you mean, girl 1 Who has anything to conceal 1 " 

" You, Rachel ; I should not have said it, but you have 
forced it out of me." 

Rachel affected to be taken with a fit of laugliing. " Why 
the girl is gone crazy, I believe." 

" I am not crazy, and people thinks me stupider than I 
am, and that I have no eyes or ears. If some persons can 
find money for smart dresses, maybe it is because they have 
smart friends. When people stops to talk to fine gentlemen 
in the street, and carries letters for them, maybe they gets 
paid for it." 

" You lie ! " exclaimed Rachel, with her face in a blaze. 

" I see you with these two eyes ; and I know who the 



310 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

gentleman was, for I see him at the party, and I heerdwliat 
he said to you then, too. Do you think I have no ears 1 
Didn't he say you were the prettiest girl there, all but your 
young mistress? and you answering him so jaunty and 
familiar ! I knows the gentleman, and all about him, for 
I have heerd James say that, when they are a-driving in 
the Park, and Captain Baines riding a fine horse, he will 
lean one hand on the carriage-door and stoop over, talking 
ever so long to Miss Wyndham, and looking so sweet all the 
while. This is all romance, I suppose ? " 

Rachel could bear this no longer, and, having no reply 
to make, she seized a scrubbing-brush which lay near at 
hand and flung it at her persecutor. Mary, however, con- 
trived to dodge the missile, and ran away. Henceforth there 
was enmity between Rachel Somers and Mary Tidman, but 
the subject-matter of the quarrel did not find its way to the 
surface again, and no further allusion was made either to 
frouzy caps or stolen interviews. 



CHAPTER XXVIII. 

T O R I C H M N D A X D B A C K . 

Most persons, I presume, have heard of the King of France 
who marched up a hill with twenty thousand men, and then 
marched down again. The expedition of the Wyndham 
family to Richmond was something similar, as respected 
apparent object or result. They went and they returned. 
Mr. and Mrs. Wyndham, with John Sanders, occupied the 
interior of the barouche ; the two girls were behind, in the 
rumble ; and James, that pink of propriety, was on the box 
with the coachman. Emma's great grievance was the sun ; 



TO RICHMOND AND BACK. 311 

she was complaining of it at starting, and, when she 
alighted at the door of the Star and Garter, she was still 
complaining. From her querulous tone one might have 
suj^posed that something or some one was to blame in the 
matter ; either the sun for shining, or those who took her 
for exposing her to it. At last her father said, " You had 
better not have come, Emma ; if you do not like the sun, 
you must keep out of it." 

" It is just the worst time of day. Papa, you see. Earlier 
or later is very well. It is so disagreeable between twelve 
and two." 

"We have all managed to get through it," said her 
father, who was always annoyed by complaints ; " and I 
hear no one making a fuss about it except yourself There 
is Gertrude taking it quite coolly." 

" And so should I, if I did not feel the sun more than 
she does. She is paler than I am, and so you might think 
her skin was more delicate, but it is quite insensible to the 
sun. I suffer frightfully ; no one knows what I suffer." 

" I think you take pretty good care to let people know, 
Emma, so far as you can," said the hard-hearted jDapa. 
" And now, who has a mind for a stroll 1 I am not come 
to Richmond to be boxed up in this room doing nothing. 
Have you ordered dinner, Beatrice 1" 

" Yes, I ordered it before I came upstairs ; but pray, 
Percy, do not call it dinner before the waiter.*' 

" My dear, what difference can it m.ake 1 1 hope it is a 
dinner." 

" Well, I think there is what you will like. One plain 
and two made dishes ; soup, of course. You do not want 
fish, do you 1 It adds so." 

" Not particularly, if Sanders does not care." 

" I know he does not care ; he says he gets enough of 
that on fasting or abstinence days. And there will be 
something sweet." 



312 



THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 



" Hang the sweets ! " 

'' But the girls like them." 

" All right ! I do not grudge them their sweets, and I 
never wish to do things stingily at this sort of place, 
Beatrice ; so let us call a dinner a dinner, and leave the 
bill to take its chance. But who is for a walk ? " 

" I will go. Papa," said Gertrude." 

" My head aches so with the glare," said Emma. 

" Lie down on that sofa, my love," said her mother, " I 
like the arm-chair myself, and do not want it." 

" O Mama, that is one of those odious crooked lounges, 
as they call them, on which no one can lie flat. I will go 
up to a bedroom, I think, till dinner-time, and keep quiet 
there." 

So Emma went upstairs. Her headache was almost 
fictitious, but it did not amuse her to go out walking ; and 
she wished to be alone, to think of her love. 

'' JoLn, you may as well stay and keep me company." 
This invitation was addressed to Sanders by his sister. 
He had been standing at the door of the hotel watching 
some arrivals, and had only just entex'ed the sitting-room. 
" You will have plenty of time for rambling in the park 
later." 

Mrs. Wyndham would willingly have dispensed with her 
brother's society, but she had an object in detaining him. 
She had hitherto never seen him by himself, except for 
short scraps of time, when interruption might occur any 
moment ; and she felt that she ought to say something 
about his or her near relations. This, however, was a topic 
which she did not like introducing before her husband and 
children. It is true that they knew well that her relatives 
belonged to an inferior class to that in wJiich they moved, 
and Percy Wyndham had never shown either disregard or 
contempt for his connections when circumstances — chiefly 
in his early married life before the death of his father-in-law 



TO RICHMOND AND BACK. 313 

— had brought him in contact with them. Had Mrs. 
Wyndham desired to see more of any of the members of 
her family, her husband would have readily gratified her ; 
but, as the indulgence would have yielded her no gratifi- 
cation, she never put his kindness to the test. As for her 
children, they knew they had all these aunts, uncles, and 
cousins, but, until one was brought on the scene in the 
person of John Sanders, they had seldom bestowed a 
thought upon them. Still, Mrs. Wyndham did not love 
talking of her family ; she wished to forget them, and was 
very glad they should forget her. Specially she did not 
desire to bring forward the subject with her brother while 
others were present, for he was sure to blunder on, or 
blurt out something which would mortify her exceedingly. 
So the present occasion ofi'ered a good opportunity. She 
did not begin at once, that he might not suspect her 
motive. John had a sharp eye, and she knew it. 

" So you dine to-morrow at Madame d'Hericourt's," she 
said. " She is an excellent person, though a little strait- 
laced." 

" I liked her very much indeed. I did not find her at 
all stiff." 

" Not stiff exactly in manners ; I meant that her ideas 
are a little narrow and antiquated." 

" Well, I liked her ideas. We interchanged some." 

" Indeed ! in that short visit 1 I never could find much 
to talk to her about. Perhaps she does not fancy me ; and 
I only hope that it may not operate to Algernon's dis- 
advantage. What did you think of the girls ? " 

" I thought them pretty and unaffected. The eldest is a 
very fine-looking young woman, with nice modest manners. 
To the youngest I took uncommonly; she is such a gay and 
frolicsome child ; but I saw very little of them ; they were 
called off for a drawing-lesson." 

" Emma says Pauline is very childish for her age ; but 



314 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

they are both of them kept so backward that it is not 
surprising." 

" I should not say the little one was backward ; many- 
people would say she was forward ; but I like saucy little 
things myself — when it is all nature, I mean." 

"Backward, I mean, as respects society and conversation. 
Mind, Pauline is getting on to seventeen, and she can talk 
about little except her kitten. But neither of the girls 
has any conversation in company. Anne, however, is 
very sensible and intelligent ; at least so I am told " — and 
Mrs. Wyndham simpered. 

Then there was a pause ; she thought that her brother 
would perhaps say something about Algernon's attachment ; 
but no, John said nothing about it, and did not seem even 
to desire to say any more about Anne d'Hericourt, for he 
immediately changed the subject. His remark, however, 
was of a kind to facilitate the introduction of a reference 
to the Sanders family. " I have been thinking over my 
plans, Beatrice," he said ; " and I find I must Jeave you on 
Thursday week." 

" So soon ! " said his sister. " You spoke of a fortnight." 

" About a fortnight, I said ; this will be only one day 
short of the time, which perhaps I may make up by just 
dropping in about two months later on my way back ; that 
is, if you have not migrated and gone into villeggia- 
tura.^' 

" Of course you will come to us," replied Mrs. Wyndham, 
rendered for the moment quite hospitable by the agreeable 
surprise of finding that her brother's stay was not to be 
lengthened to the extent she had feared. " "We shall pro- 
bably remain in town until the end of August ; certainly 
until Parliament is up ; and then we shall go for a couple of 
months to the sea-side. I suppose you go straight into 
Warwickshire now 1 " 

" Yes, to Compton Paddocks." 



TO RICHMOND AND BACK. 315 

" David and Sarah go on in the old house still, of 
course 1 " 

" O, yes, they'll never budge from there. Have not you 
heard from them lately 1 " 

" Not very lately. I know I am a bad correspondent, and 
when one meets so seldom, there is so little to say. But I 
shall like to hear your account of everybody and everything ; 
and you must give my love, of course." 

" I take it there is nothing to give any account about 
Comptonville, I expect, is just what it was. I don't suppose 
there has been a dab of paint applied to door or window, or 
an old carpet replaced, since father's death." 

" And my father was so particular about the furniture." 

" Yes, but David cares for nothing but his pigs. He 
keeps them at the back, where he has built a sort of yard ; 
but you must have seen that improvement, as David would 
call it." 

" No, I have not." 

" You can hear the pigs grunt from the dining-room, and 
smell them, too, when the window is open ; but tbat is not 
often. My eyes and wig ! how they do /roust at Compton- 
ville." 

" How very un2)leasant ! I do not think I could bear it." 

" Your fastidious, fashionable nose would almost turn up, 
I fancy. I do not like it myself, though I am not fastidious, 
and certainly not fashionable, for I live on fresh air, but I 
must put up with it while I am there ; and T shall be 
mostly out of doors." 

" What does Sarah do ? " 

" Well, T do not know more than yourself. I expect to 
find her looking thirteen years older, and knitting stockings 
just as when I left her. She has a few cronies, I believe, 
in the village, and the buggy and the old horse take her and 
David the two miles to Mass on Sundays." 

" It is a dull existence." 



316 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

" Not much stir in it, but they don't find it dull. I 
must stay about three weeks at Compton any way, and shall 
make it out somehow, I have no doubt." 

"And thenr' 

" And then I go north. First to Edinburgh, where I 
have business with my agent, which will keep me a few 
days ; and then I shall treat myself to a short Highland 
tour. I may go to Glasgow ; but my business would not 
oblige me." 

" Then why go ? " 

" 0, to see Michael, of course. You know he lives 
there." 

" I was not sure that he had not moved lately," replied 
Mrs. Wyndham. This was an evasion, for she knew very 
well that her brother Michael lived at Glasgow, but at that 
moment he had quite slipped out of her memory. 

" Bless your heart ! he never thought of moving. He 
carries on old Horniman's trade now." 

"Old whor' 

" Old Horniman, his father-in-law ; you had forgotten his 
name, had you 1 " The lady, in fact, knew nothing about old 
Horniman. She knew that her brother Michael had been 
put into some situation in a house of business in the cotton 
line years before, and had an indistinct recollection of having 
heard that he had married, but she had never made any 
particular inquiries about his belongings. " He was for- 
tunate in worldly matters, — Mike was," continued Sanders, 
" marrying that fat hosier's daughter. 

" He was an actual hosier, was he?" said Mrs. Wyndham. 

"Yes, he was an actual hosier," replied her brother John; 
" sold stockings, and had stockings hanging up in his 
window ; and now brother Mike has them hanging up in 
his window, for the window is his now. The fair Helen was 
the only child ; so he owns the shop since old Horniman died, 
and he will be very happy and proud, no doubt, to supply 



TO RICHMOND AND BACK. 317 

yon all with hosiery, if you will send him an order." Mrs. 
Wyndham shuddered inwardly at the idea, and felicitated 
herself on the fact that Glasgow was a long way off. 
" ' Sanders, late Horniman,' figures over the shop front," 
pursued the relentless brother, who, I suspect, felt a little 
mischievous pleasure in these distasteful details — " and a 
very good business he carries on ; but. Lord bless you ! I 
would not be in Mike's shoes, or stockings either," 

'' I dare say not ; your own business is quite another 
thing." 

*^ I did not mean that ; hosiery is a very good business 
in its way, but I mean I would not take his responsibilities. 
He married a Protestant, yon see; that was his first mistake, 
if it was not a fault ; and then, I suspect, he must have 
strangely neglected his duty about the children. The 
daughters — there are three girls — go with their mother 
out and out, and the two boys, as fine young fellows, I'm 
told, as you would wish to see, go with nothing at all, so 
far as I can gather from Mike." 

" That is very sad ; and what does Michael do ? " 

"Ah! that is just it. He is one of your nominal Catholics. 
I suppose he goes to Mass on Sundays, when it suits him, 
but as for duties, they have been in arrears, I very much 
suspect, for many a long day. What can you expect from 
a brood reared in that manner ? Before I knew all this, I 
had it in my mind to take one of those young chaps over 
with me, and see what I could make of him in the wine trade. 
I knew his father was casting about where to place the 
eldest, but I thought I would just have a look at the lads, 
befoi'e I gave a hint of my thoughts ; for, you see, it is a 
different thing taking a nephew into one's business from 
taking a stranger. If he cannot be like something of a 
son to you, he may be a proper nuisance ; and you are 
not, or, at least, you don't feel, so free to give him the 
sack." 



318 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

" In short, you were thinking of adopting one of these 
boysf said his sister, to whom the subject was becoming 
one of no small interest. 

" Not precisely that, and nothing in a hurry, anyhow ; 
however, all that's at an end in my mind since the letter I 
had from David the other day. David is all sound on those 
matters — his religion, I mean, and so forth, and he is not 
given to exaggerate. I can trust his report. Besides, I wrote 
to Mike myself after that, and told him what I heard. His 
answer was unsatisfactory ; and he did not seem to wish to 
be bothered. His boys, he said, were not Protestants. He 
could not say they attended well to their religion — I had 
asked the question — but they were very good sons to him, 
so he had no cause to complain, and was sure it was best to 
leave them to themselves. If worried on the subject, they 
would perhaps give up entirely and go to the Protestant 
church. And so I am almost doubting now whether I will 
go to Glasgow at all. I am afraid things are past mending 
there by anything I could say ; and Mike clearly would 
not like my saying anything at all. Nothing would take 
me among them but the hope of doing good ; otherwise, I'd 
keep a hundred miles off. If there's one thing in the world 
goes against me, it's a bad Catholic." 

Then Mrs. Wyndham felt sure that her brother was 
looking up his nephews, as she had suspected, with a view 
to future pecuniary arrangements. 

After a slight pause, John said, " And our Australians — 
do you ever hear from them '? " 

" I have not heard for a long time," replied his sister. " I 
forget which wrote last, Lucy or myself. It dropped off — 
the correspondence, I mean. One hardly knows what to 
write about to such distant relations." 

" Kelations at such a distance, you mean, I suppose," 
replied John. " A sister is hardly a distant relation." 

" But what could I write that could interest her, our lives 



TO RICHMOND AND BACK. 319 

being so different ? " pleaded Mrs. Wi^Tidham, in rather an 
apologetic tone. 

*' I should have thought every little thing would in- 
terest relations at the other side of the globe ; at least, T 
go on that plan." 

'' Poor thing ! " said his sister, " she has had to rough it, 
I fear. Her early letters were full of their distresses and 
difficulties, which pained me very much, for I was quite 
unable to give any substantial assistance. I hope they are 
doing well now." 

" Assistance ! " almost shouted John. " Hope they are 
doing well ! I suppose they are, indeed. Why, the Jack- 
sons are among the chief people of Melbourne ! Jackson is 
in Parliament, and thinks himself, I'll be bound, as great a 
man as Percy, any day ; indeed, I doubt whether Wynd- 
ham has a tithe of the weight in our Imperial Parliament 
which honest Ben Jackson has in the Melbourne House of 
Commons. And then they have some thousand head of 
sheep and cattle. Substantial assistance, indeed ! Why, I 
think Lucy would be amused at that idea, seeing that she is 
one of the biggest squatteresses in the colony. 1 suppose 
they could buy us up all round." 

" I am very glad to hear so good an account. Do you 
think they will return now they have made their fortune V 

" Not they. They are great people there, and would be 
small people here." 

" Then they do well to stay where they are," rejoined his 
sister ; and she cordially meant what she said, on her own 
account as much as theirs. " I think I must write to Lucy," 
she added, "and felicitate her ; that is, if you think she 
would care to hear." 

'* A letter from the old country is always welcome," said 
Sanders. 

" And you must give me her address, and tell me how 
many children there are." 



320 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

" O, she will tell you herself. There are eight or ten, I 
think — plenty on 'em, I know. Jack's the eldest, and Tom 
next. Maria is married to a coal merchant, and lives in 
Melbourne ; the rest you must find out." So saying, 
Sanders scratched down the address of their squatter 
brethren. And after this there was no more family talk ; 
each fell to musing. "What Sanders was thinking of I can- 
not say, but I believe his sister was wondering whether he 
would consider Algernon a good enough Catholic to favour 
with some " substantial assistance " towards enabling him to 
marry. 

After a while the walkers came in, Emma came down, and 
the dinner came up. Nothing very remarkable was said or 
done. Mr. Wyndham did not like the soup, his wife ex- 
pressed orrow, but was inwardly rather glad, as this dissa- 
tisfaction might tend to reconcile him to home fare. Mr. 
Sanders observed that the boy helping to wait was a smart 
lad, ujDon which Emma said to her mother that she so wished 
they had a page. " Now, when we are away. Mama, and 
have taken James, it does look so bad and lodging-house- 
like for a woman to be answering the door ; and tliere are 
a great many cards being left just now. Bowles never goes 
to the door by any chance." 

" Nothing could induce me to keep a ' buttons,' said her 
father. " There are no more troublesome animals in the 
world j they break more than the amount of their 
wages, eat as much as two, prig the sugar when they can, 
and are generally as impudent as the deuce. Besides, I can- 
not afford to keep another servant. If I kept another it 
should be a woman. Our men-servants, lazy fellows, have 
next to nothing to do as it is." 

" O, Percy ! " exclaimed his better-half, in a remonstrating 
and dissenting tone. Mrs. Wyndham was much more tender 
about givinor trouble to the men-servants than to the maids 
— a by no means uncommon case. 



TO RICHMOND AND BACK. 321 

" I am quite of your opinion, Wyndham," said his 
brother-in-law ; " and I go so far as to say that men have 
no business in the house ; domestic work for the females, 
and out-of-door work for the men ; the stables and the garden 
are therr province. If I had fifty thousand a year, instead 
of less than as many hundreds, I never would have a 
flunkey or a butler," 

" The flunkey I could spare, perhaps," said Wyndham, 
" but the butler is a necessity." 

" Why can't a woman," said Sanders, '■' make fully as good 
a butler, if put in the way of looking after the cellar ? Of 
course she can, and is less likely to drink the wine. Besides, 
a man may be his own butler without any great labour." 

" That I certainly cannot be," replied the brother-in- 
law. 

" The footman is just as much a necessity as the butler," 
added Mrs. Wyndham. *' Who is to go with the carriage, 
or walk after us when we go out ? " 

'' The man who goes with the carriage need not be in the 
house," replied her brother, " nor the flunkey who saunters 
after you in the street, if you must have such an article 
dogging your heels ; but I should keep the inside of the 
house clear of such fellows if I were ever so rich. The men- 
servants find nothing to do within doors except make love 
to the maids or quarrel with them — generally both." 

" There's some truth in that," replied Wyndham, laugh- 
ing J " but we must take the world as we find it." 

No further topic of much interest was started. The 
whole party went out in the evening to admire the view 
from the terrace and take a stroll in the park ; then they 
came in, and there was the concluding cup of tea, and the 
paying of the bill, and the pleasant fresh drive home. On 
the whole, Sanders enjoyed himself very well. He could 
always find amusement in his quiet, simple way ; so the 
chief object of the expedition might be said to be attained. 

Y 



322 THE WYXDHAM FAMILY. 

The party returned to find a cheerful, well-lighted room,, 
with the Slipper laid out ; and all, Emma included, were in 
good humour. Suj^per is proverbially a cheerful meal ; 
much more so than dinner. Perhaps the want of formality 
and absence of the flunkeys may rank among the reasons 
for this acknowledged fact. 

" Going to bed already, Sanders ! " said Wyndham, who 
was in an unusually gay and sociable humour for him. This 
observation had been provoked by John Sanders j^nshing 
back his chair and lighting his flat candle. 

" Not thinking of it. I had forgotten something ; " and 
Sanders had forgotten something ; it had escaped his 
memory for two or three days. Perhaps the reader may 
recollect that, when he took his walk with Gertrude on the 
Saturday, he spent some time in a jeweller's shop, desiring 
his niece to look about her while he transacted his business. 
The good-natured uncle was, in fact, engaged in choosing a 
present for each of the two girls. On his return, the afiair 
of Captain Baines immediately occurred, and that put the 
events of the morning out of his head. The presents were 
in the pocket of a coat which he had not since worn, so 
that nothing revived the memory of the agreeable surprise 
which he had prepared for his nieces. He suddenly remem- 
bered it, however, while they were all sitting at supper, 
and this was the cause of his abruptly leaving the social 
board. He soon reappeared, put out his candle, and 
approached a small table at the end of the room ; no one 
noticed what he was about until he called out to his two 
nieces, " You must come, girls, and take your chance of 
what I have in my two hands." (His hands were behind 
his back.) "Right or left? Emma, you are the eldest, so 
you must speak." 

" But I don't know what you mean." 

" Never mind ; you can say, ' Right ' or ' Left,' cannot 

your' 



TO RICHMOND AND BACK. 323' 

" Yes," said Emma, " of course I can say that, if yon 
wish me : ' Right or left.' " 

"That won't do, Miss Pert; you must say either 'Right * 
or ' Left ' ; only the one word." 

" Wei], ' Right '; I always like to be right." 

" And not left. I thought not," said the uncle. That 
would not suit you, my girl, would it ? Come, Emma, you 
have got the butterfly. I somehow thought you would get 
the butterfly." And Sanders, opening a small card -box, 
produced a pretty brooch in the form of that volatile insect, 
the wings adorned with emeralds and rubies, and presented 
it to his eldest niece. " You, Gertrude, must accept what 
remains ; " and he gave her the other brooch, which was 
equally pretty, but in the form of a Maltese cross. 

Emma was standing with her present in her hand, 
scarcely knowing what to say — never, perhaps, had a 
present yielded her less pleasure ; but Gertrude, exclaiming, 
" Oh, how pretty, and how kind of you, uncle ! " threw her 
arms round his neck with a spontaneous outbreak of aflec- 
tionate gratitude. Emma could not bring herself to imitate^ 
her sister, but she now expressed herself also as highly 
delighted and very much obliged, and hastened to show the 
butterfly to her mother, a proceeding which seemed to 
relieve her from the embarrassment of her position and 
veil the contrast between her behaviour and that of her 
sister. Mrs. Wyndham added her warmest' thanks, and 
admired the beauty and good taste of the brooches. Papa 
also endorsed the praise, which was deserved; and every 
one parted for the night with smiles and apparent satis- 
faction. 

But one there was who was far from being satisfied. 
Gertrude was lingering over a book of devotion, and had 
shaded her candle from her sister's bed, believing Emma to 
have already dropped asleep, when she heard something 
very like a sob from under the bed-clothes. " I fear I am 

Y 2 



324 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

keeping yon awake, dear," she whispered, approaching 
Emma's bed ; " I will put out my light." 

"It is not that," said Emma, throwing back the sheet, 
in which her face had been partially buried, and sitting up. 
Her colour was heightened, and there was a tear on her 
cheek ; it was a tear of vexation. " Oh, I wish he had 
never given it me ! I do so dislike it." 

"What! the butterfly r' 

"Not the thing itself; it is very pretty ; but I so dislike 
a present from him. I cannot bear him, and am always 
saying so, and always laughing at him, and always quizzing 
him." 

" Then you must do so no more now." 

" But it is my only consolation for the intense bore and 
annoyance he is to me. O Gertrude, you do not understand 
these things. You do not understand how odious it is to 
have anything given to you by a person you dislike as much 
as I do him ! " 

" It is very nasty of you, Emma, to say that," exclaimed 
Gertrude, with an indignation unusual to her. 

" You are unjust, Gertrude," replied her sister. " You 
might call me nasty if I felt no annoyance at all, took my 
present, and ridiculed the giver behind his back just as 
comfortably as before. If I was the unfeeling creature you 
think me, I should do this. It is because I have some 
feeling that I am vexed ; and this you call nasty." 

" Forgive me, dearest Emma," replied Gertrude, kissing 
her. " It was very wrong and unkind of me to use such a 
Avord ; but I did not mean to be unkind, and I am sure 
you are not unfeeling. I was myself vexed, because I am 
persuaded that you wrong my uncle by thinking as you do 
of him. He is kindness itself. I have seen more of him 
than you have, and, though I must own he has not much 
polish, he has, what is much better, an excellent heart. 
And, besides, there is no vulgarity of mind in him, I can 



TO RICHMOXD AND BACK. 325 

assure you ; liis sentiments are all so good, so true, so 
upright."' 

'•' I think no ill of him," replied Emma ; " but T have for 
him what is, to me, far more difficult to conquer than 
would be any dislike which came from disapprobation, or 
which might proceed even from resentment for an injury. 
I have a rej^ugnance, a distaste for him. He excites in me 
a disgust I cannot express." 

" But that is so unreasonable." 

" It may be so ; but on that very account it is impossible 
to argue with it. You cannot reason against disgust ; it is 
a matter of feeling. You cannot fairly judge me, Gertrude, 
for you have no such temptations." 

" And I do not judge you, dearest ; but I think we 
ought to resist such feelings if sve have them, because they 
make us unloving and uncharitable. I am sure you know 
this yourself, because you say it vexes you that you cannot 
go on comfortably indulging your dislike in the way you 
did before, now that he has shown you a kindness. Does 
not that prove to you, dear Emma, that to entertain such 
feelings towards people is not charitable 1 I know we 
cannot help our feelings ; but we can try to take no notice 
of them, and not act upon them." 

" That is all very fine, but I simply cannot, Gertrude." 

" Yet what is there that is so difficult ? Uncle John's 
appearance and manners can really do you -no harm ; they 
are no injury to you. It is all a matter of imagination. If 
you would not dwell upon your aversion, it would shrink 
up into nothing, for it has no foundation." 

" I teU you, Gertrude, that it would be far easier for me 
to struggle against if it had a better foundation. If he had 
injured me, I could forgive him. I may be ill-tempered, 
hot, what you please, but I am not resentful ; I know I 
am not. If I were resentful " — and then Emma paused, her 
countenance assuming an air of gloomy thoughtfulness — 



326 THE WYXDHAM FAMILY. 

^' if I were resentful, Gertrude, you would not see me speak- 
ing calmly, and bearing patiently with a person who has 
deeply injured me"; and tears of passionate emotion now 
<;oursed each other down her cheek. 

" Whom do you mean, Emma 1 " asked the bewildered 
Oertrude. 

" Whom do I mean, Emma 1 " — and Emma looked her 
sister full in the face — " I mean Algernon." 

•* Algernon ! why, you and he have always been such 
great allies." 

" Yes, we were great allies, and I have stood his warm 
friend on more than one occasion, but your ally sometimes 
proves treacherous and ungrateful. Algernon has been botli 
in respect to me, yet I bear with him, and betray no anger 
against him. I do not know, indeed, that I feel much ; none, 
3.t least, which I cannot control." 

*' You perfectly amaze me, Emma. What do you allude 
to ? What has Algernon done 1 " 

" All he can to destroy my peace and mar my happiness ; 
but what is the use talking ?" she said, breaking off abruptly, 
*' I want to go to sleep now " ; and Emma buried her face 
again in the bedclothes. 

Gertrude knew she had no chance of hearing anything 
further that night, so she put out her candle, and betook 
herself to her own bed, with a heavier heart than she had 
brought up-stairs. 



CHAPTER XXIX. 

APPREHENSIONS AND CONSULTATIONS. 

*' Oh, Ma'am ! the fat is in the fire," exclaimed Rachel the 
next morning, the moment she was free to address a word 



APPREHENSIONS AND CONSULTATIONS. ' 327 

in private to her young mistress. She had been hanging 
about for the last five minutes, to watch her opportunity, 
when Gertrude, as usual, should go down to make the tea. 
" The murder will be out as sure as sure before long," she 
continued. 

Emma looked up lu her face with a mystified air. "What 
do you mean ? " she said. *• Cannot you speak out ? you quite 
frighten one, talking about fire and murder in that strange 
way. What murder will be out ? " 

Thus exhorted to speak plainly, Rachel did speak plainly. 
" It will be all out about Captain Baines before long ; that 
is all I have got to say." 

'•' What will be out about Captain Baines ? " asked Emma 
sharply. 

" Well, all about the letter to you, and my speaking to 
him in the street, and everything else ; and it will come 
round to Mrs. Wyndham's ears very soon, you may be sure? 
and then " 

Emma, now thoroughly alarmed, entirely forgot her dignity, 
which up to this time she had endeavoured in some measure 
to maintain, and impatiently asked for an explanation. The 
barrier was broken down at last ; Eachel was free to say 
what she liked, and Emma was bound by self-interest to 
listen, and to tolerate the freedom of her attendant. 

*' Well, it is just this: that dull little minx, Mary, who is 
sharper, however, than I gave her credit for, s^-w me standing 
talking in the street to the Captain, and saw him give me a 
letter ; and she showed plain enough that she knew who 
tile letter was for, and said I was paid for what I did, and 
that was the reason I could wear smart caps. It all came, 
in fact, of some remark I made on the girl's own cap which 
afii'onted her ; and then out comes all this. She is very 
close, and I dare say I should not have heard a word of 
what she had seen if this had not happened ; but she will 
pour it some day, I expect, into Mrs. Tyrell's ear, Mary 



328 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

knows very well, you see, that tlie Captain is a bean of yours. 
James told her that, and how he leans over the carnage 
saying sweet things to you in the Park. She talks more 
to James than to any one, I fancy ; but T am not afraid of 
liim, he will never venture to say a word to your Papa and 
Mama. I am not sure of Mrs. Tyrell ; if she should take 
it into her wise head that it was right to tell a thing, she'd 
stick at nothing, and face everybody — that's my notion." 

Emma sat listening to this rigmarole in mute consterna- 
tion. At last she inquired what reply Rachel had made to 
Mary. 

" Of course I denied it all outright, and told her it was 
a fib. What could I do ? I wasn't going to betray you, 
for certain." 

"Do you think Mary has told Tyrell ]" 

" Not yet, I am pretty sure. Mary's not much of a 
gossip, and is in no hurry to tell anything, but, you see, 
Mrs. Tyrell pumps her — pumps her conscience, I mean ; 
and that takes time, and won^t be done while we are so 
busy." 

" But will be done, you think '? " 

"Yes, when there is time for a good hour's sitting 
and prosing by themselves. If the Captain's a-going to 
come forward," added Rachel after a slight pause — for she 
was aware that the present circumstances allowed her con- 
siderable freedom, of which advantage she was not slow to 
avail herself, — " that makes a difference, of course, and the 
whole thing will not matter a straw." 

Emma was in for it now ; there was no help for her ; 
whether she would or no, Rachel was her confidante, and, 
truth to say, at that moment it was a certain relief to have 
a confidante of some kind or other. Accordingly she replied 
to her tire-woman's question that, owing to unexpected 
obstacles, it was impossible for the Captain to present him- 
self as her acknowledged suitor just yet. " I have every 



APPREHENSIONS AND CONSULTATIONS. 329 

hope," she added, " that, when able to do so. Papa and 
Mama will make no objection ; but in the mean time, and 
before anything has been said to them, I should be very 
sorry that they heard through others that a letter had been 
l^rivately addressed to me. It was an imprudence on his 
part j it was no fault of mine ; but, if it came out in the 
way you suggest, it would jirejudice their minds against 
him." Thus did Emma endeavour to put the whole affair 
in the best light she could, and to save her own self-respect 
in the eyes of her inferior. 

Rachel listened and acquiesced, but did not believe a 
word ; that is, she did not believe that Captain Baines had 
a chance of success by a legitimate application in the 
proper quarter; neither did she credit Emma with the 
hopes she expressed. It was a clandestine love-affau^ in her 
eyes, no more, no less, and was likely, with her aid, to end 
as clandestine love affairs so often do. " Then, if it is all 
right, perhaps we need trouble no further," she replied. 

" But it is not all right if you think it is likely to 
come to Mama's ears in this roundabout way," said 
Emma. 

" Mary will blab at last, you may depend," rejoined 
Rachel ; '' but maybe the Captain will be clear of his diffi- 
culties first." 

" How can I tell when he may be free 1 " 

" Perhaps he can tell you. He's a-comiag to dinner, 
isn't he, on Saturday 1 " 

" No, he cannot come, and has left town, and I do not 
know when I shall see him." 

" Dear me 1 " said Rachel; " I wish Mary could be parted 
with. Really she is not worth her salt." 

" Mama has it in her head to part with her at the end of 
the season, I know." 

" Why not at once 1 There's fifty as good as her to be 
had at a moment's notice. I am sure. Miss Wyndham, you 



330 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

could persuade your Mama ; you can persuade her a'most 
anything." 

" But, if she was parted with immediately, she would not 
go immediately. She must, of course, have her month's 
warning." 

" Unless you could contrive, ma'am, to hear of some 
treasure you wished to secure. That would be an excuse for 
sending Mary off, paying her month." 

"' Mama will not wish to do that, I fear," said Emma, who 
was quite aware that it would be considered an extravagant 
proceeding. " However, I must see what I can do. I fancy 
Miss Yincent did mention some girl to me, for whom she 
was desirous of finding a situation as soon as possible ; 
but I think it was a housemaid's place she wanted." 

" That will be no difficulty," observed Rachel. *' You 
can call her which you like, for the girl will have to work 
above and below." 

*' And then I do not think she was a * ti-easure' exactly." 

" What matter ? She will serve the purpose of getting 
rid of Mary ; and it will be hard if she is not the briskest 
and most useful of the two. Mary is only fit for a farm- 
house." 

And so the plan of operations was arranged. Emma was 
going to Cadogan Place that morning, to settle about riding 
in the afternoon, and was to endeavour to negotiate the 
business. But Mrs. Wyndham must be prepared by pre- 
vious lamentations as to Mary's incompetency. Accordingly, 
Emma was eloquent on that subject after breakfast was 
concluded, and she was able to get her mother's ear without 
Gertrude being at hand, who was always ready to undertake 
a Quixotic defence of all who were accused. '' What I am 
afraid of, Mama," said Emma, " is that she will make some 
great blunder with the cooking on Saturday. Her stupidity 
passes imagination." 

" She will have very little opportunity ; M. Pattin and 



APPREHEXSIOXS AND CONSULTATIONS. 331 

Tyrell will pretty well share between them all the work 
that is of any importance." 

" Perhaps so, but we have not always got M. Pattiu. I 
believe, IMama, she positively delays Tyrell at her cooking 
rather than helps her ; and I always hear Koper com- 
plaining of her for what she calls * skimping ' her work up- 
.stairs." 

" Did Tyrell complain of her 1 " 

" No, and would not, if she was twice the lump she is, 
supposing that were possible. I fancy Tyrell thinks that 
Mary is a daily grievance for which she ought to be thankful, 
as she was for your mortifying advice. Tyrell is such an 
odd body." 

'•' She is, indeed ; we really want a change." 

" The sooner we get rid of Mary, I am sure, the better ; 
she breaks a lot of things, she is very slovenly, and, 
when she is found fault with, she is sulky. She is not 
fit, in fact, for a gentleman's place, and, above all, not for a 
London house." 

Then Mi-s. Wyndham fell to thinking, and her daughter, 
after waiting a minute or two to allow time for the mental 
digestion of the facts imparted, said, '• Mama, could I have 
the carriage to take me to Cadogan Place 1 1 must see 
Minny this morning, to settle about riding and to practise. 
I will take my habit, and Thomas can bring the horse there 
at four o'clock." 

'^ Why, you will be away nearly the whole day ! " 

*• I cannot help it. I must attend to the practising, since 
I may be wanted for part of the evening at the piano, for 
M. Dubois cannot come tiU late. This is the only day 
before Saturday when Mr. Devereux can spare a morning. 
Oh, I forgot to say. Mama — don't you think it might be well 
to ask him to fill the vacant place at dinner 1 He has been 
very obliging about forming part of our band ; he is pleasant 
enough, and, 'at any rate, will talk more than Gerti-ude, who. 



332 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

besides, is very glad to escape the dinner — that is," as she 
saw her mother hesitating, •' if you like me to ask him, for 
I do not care a button about it myself." 

" Oil, yes, ask him by all means, my love. I was only 
wondering whether any one might send an excuse, and, if 
so, your father would like eight quite as well or better than 
ten." 

" But who is likely to send an excuse 1 " To this query 
Mrs. Wyndham made no response. She knew very well 
whose excuse she would be right glad to receive. " Ask 
Mr. Devereux, my dear," she said ; " it is well to do so ; or 
I had better wo-ite a note : that will be more proper." 

" And now that I think of it," added Emma, "I am 
pretty sure that Minny knows of a servant to suit us, if we 
should part with Mary. Shall I inquire about her ? I 
know we could have her as soon as we wished." 

Her mother acquiesced, and the bell was rung to order 
the carriage forthwith to take Miss Wyndham to Cadogan 
Place. 

After she was gone Algernon dropped in, or, rather, he came 
with a very definite purpose, although, as usual, he did not 
wear the announcement of any purpose on his face. Alger- 
non took things easily. He and his mother were alone ; 
John Sanders had gone to his dentist, and Gertrude was 
trying on a dress up-stairs. After a few questions and 
answers about the previous day's expedition, and some 
desultory talk on other casual matters, Algernon came out 
with his business. " Mother," he said, " that fellow Baines is 
not only not gone into Yorkshire — I never thought he was — 
but he is hanging about London, or, at any rate, is in and 
out continually. Thornhill mentioned that he saw him 
yesterday in the Strand with Jardine." 

" You don't say so ! " exclaimed Mrs. Wyndham, with a 
very long face. 

" And T think I caught a sight of him myself yesterday 



APPREHENSIONS AND COXSULTATIOXS. 333 

evening on the Kensington Road. He was a good way off, 
with his back to me, but the horse was like his, and the 
rider had a great air of him. Baines has some friends, 
I know, at Barnes, and I suspect he is staying with them, 
and slipping into town every day. What I fear is his 
meeting Emma in the Park. If she rode with me, as 
formerly, I should know how to deal with him, but she 
joins Miss Vincent's party now." 

" Do you think, Algernon, that he would venture to 
speak to Emma if he met her, after what occui-red the 
other day 1 " 

" I am not at all sure he would not. He has plenty of 
assurance. How would he know that anything had been 
told her, or that she believed the story if she had heard it 1 
He would bow first, and then, if she made a smiling return, 
as undoubtedly she would, Baines would ride up and join 
the party. Emma likes him ; do not flatter yourself that 
she is indifferent ; but, whether or no, we do not Avant her 
to be flirting with a man of disreputable character like this 
fellow. Something must be said to her now, and you must 
say it, mother." 

'' Say what ? Algernon, you have no idea how diflicult 
it is to deal with Emma." 

'' But I fancy I have a very good idea. Still it must be 
done, and you are the proper person to do it." 

'- Must I tell her what your uncle says about him V 

'• No, not while he is here. I would not mention my 
uncle to her, or she would at once refuse to believe, and 
perhaps behave to him in a manner Avhich would annoy 
you greatly. You must only tell her that we have heard 
things to the prejudice of Baines's character on the best 
authority, and that the acquaintance must be dropped. 
A cold bow would effect this, I dare say ; and, if that were 
not enough, then monosyllabic answers to his observations, 
if he ventured to address her, would be sure to succeed. 



334 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

Emma would know how to turn a cold shoulder as well as 
any one if she chose to do so." 

" But supposing she objects, Algernon, and says she 
cannot cut him, with no apparent reason ? " 

'' Then you must tell her that my father must be informed." 
'' My heart fails me, Algernon. How am I to do it 1 
And, supposing she were to ask who told us, what could 
I say?" 

" Let her think, if you like, that I have heard something ; 
as indeed I have." 

" Would it not be well, Algernon," said his mother, 
" that you should speak to Emma instead of me 1 You 
■will acquit yourself much better, and it will come less 
unacceptably from you." 

" I do not know that. She took it veiy ill of me when 
I spoke to her before." 

" Then you have spoken to her already ? " 
" Yes, I did, and very gently too, about her flirtation 
with Baines. It was on the day after the party, when 
I had observed something suspicious, and she was extremely 
cross, and would not yield an inch. Had she been disposed 
to take my advice in good part, I should not have bothered 
you about the matter." 

" Do, Algernon, my dear, try again. It makes me so 
nervous, that I feel I should not speak at all as I should 
wish. She has a way of setting me down which I cannot 
get over ;" and Mrs. Wyndham looked so imploringly at 
her son that he could not refuse his aid. 

" If I speak, it must be in your name, mother, and as 
commissioned by you ; after behaving to me as she did the 
other day, I would not of myself have recurred to the subject 
again." 

" By all means ; say I begged you to do so, and that 
I do not wish to talk about the matter to her, or that any 
notice should be taken of it. Oh, Algernon, I am so obliged 



APPREHENSIONS AND CONSULTATIONS. 335 

to you ; " and then Mrs. WjTidliam remembered the ride in 
the Park tliat afternoon, and expressed her fears lest 
Cai^tain Baines might be there, and speak to Emma before 
she had been warned. Algernon promised that he would 
join the Vincent party himself, have an eye on his sister, 
and communicate his message if he had the opportunity, 
which, however, he considered was scarcely probable. Then 
Gertrude came do^vn, and Mrs. Wyndham, whispering 
to her son that it would be well to give her the same 
caution as her sister was to receive, left the two together, 
and betook herself to her own bedroom. 

Here she found Roper, j)ondering over an open drawer. 
The la<ly's-maid seemed to be busying herself, but was 
really spinning out the time, in hopes her mistress might 
come up-stairs, for she had something she wished to say to 
her. Tliis something did not relate to gowns or caps, 
although she commenced on that topic as soon as the looked- 
for opportunity presented itself. Mrs. Eoper had been 
making her reflections, and the result was this — Mrs. Tyrell 
was supplanting her, if not in Mr. Bowles's affections — for 
perhaps at no time did she flatter herself that she had 
positively won them — yet decidedly in her chance of 
winning them. Clearly she had none while Mrs. Tyrell 
was in the field, and her prospects would every day, no 
doubt, become more hopeless. As yet she did not think 
that they were irretrievably damaged. If Tyrell could be 
got out of the way, Mr. Bowles would probably fall back 
on his old habits ; particularly if the next cook was not to 
his taste. But how was her rival to be removed ? Roper 
had heard her mistress occasionally hint that some change 
might bt' made in the establishment when the season was 
over, but, even if this change referred to Tyrell, it was 
a long time to wait; and what mischief might not be 
effected in the intervening weeks ! The refusal to go to 
the play had, however, evidently ruffled Mrs. ^yyndhanl 



336 THE WYXDHA^I FAMILY. 

considerably, and Koper thought that she might take 
advantage of her present state of temper to irritate her 
still further, and perhaps push her on to a desire of parting 
with the offender at once. For Roper knew that her 
mistress was proud and haughty, and extremely sensitive as 
to anything which she viewed as a liberty in an inferior. 

None probably know our faults of temper better than 
the servants who wait upon us personally. They may 
misjudge us in other points, but in this they have the 
advantage of an experience which few possess. They see 
us at unguarded moments, and free from the kind of control 
which we almost unconsciously exercise in the company of 
those who are less prepared to put up with unreasonableness, 
caprice, and ill-humour than are our domestic attendants. 
The very gi'umbling which a lady knows would weary parent, 
sister, or child, is freely indulged in before her maid, particu- 
larly if she be an old servant, for in her, she knows, it will 
find a complacent listener, one who will even regard it as a 
kindness or a condescension to be thus taken into confidence 
in any form ; and many a confidence is, in fact, thus received 
and much light thrown on character and disposition in the 
eyes of the inferior. Mrs. Wyndham, unbending as she was 
to those beneath her, indulged occasionally in this species 
of confidential grumbling ; for she did not like to weary 
her husband with it, and was very forbearing in this respect 
even towards her children. Temper, if not mastered, but 
merely restrained, must have its safety-valve, and thus 
Roper came to know a good deal about her mistress's 
disposition. She knew her to be prudent, cautious, and 
not given to taking a hasty step save when under the 
influence of pride, and when suddenly excited by some 
supposed offence to her dignity. Roper accordingly 
reckoned upon this foible for leading or driving her in 
the desired way. A few words passed about the dress to 
be worn on Saturday, and some directions about the altera- 



APPREHENSIONS AND CONSULTATIONS. 337 

tion of a cap ; then there were some inquiries about the 
fitting of Miss Gertrude's dress ; and, when all this was 
conchided, and while Roper was thinking how she should 
introduce what she purposed sapng, her mistress facilitated 
matters by asking her what she thought of Mary. " Will 
anything ever be made of that girl?" she said. 

" I doubt it, ma'am," replied the maid ; " there's not the 
stuff in her. She's slow, and won't be hurried ; you might 
as well liope to make a cart-horse gallop. The girl knows 
it herself, and I don't think she likes to be praised for 
doing better much more than she does being blamed for 
doing badly, because she thinks she will be expected to 
keep on like that, and she knows she can't and won't. 
She's a slug — that's my idea." 

" And she is sulky, I understand, wlien blamed." 

" Looks a bit sullen, sometimes." 

" Yet T}Tell tells me she improves." 

" Law ! Ma'am, nobody thinks so but Mrs. Tyrell ; 
and perhaps she don't think it, only it's the thing to say. 
Mrs. Tyrell is like that, you see." 

"Like what?" 

" "Well, I don't know, but Mrs. Tyrell makes a point to 
agree with no one who blames anybody. She thinks it 
Christian, or that it looks Christian, to say, ' We must 
hope the best, and believe the best of people.' I'm tired of 
hearing it, for I can't help thinking there's mor6 show than 
reality ; particularly w]ien I hear her blaming persons she 
has no business to blame, and giving her opinion so free 
about — about what don't concern her;" and Mrs. Roper 
began Tiusily shutting up the wardrobe, as if she was on 
the point of leaving the room. 

But her manner had been so pointed in making this last 
observation that Mrs. Wyndham's curiosity was roused and 
her suspicions awakened. '• Tyrell," she said, " is certainly 
very disagreeable in some things. I cannot understand 

z 



338 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

•why she took that obstinate fit not to go to the play, when 
her refusal was evidently inconvenient to me, and unkind, 
too, by the other servants, who lost theii' amusement." 

" Law ! Ma'am," exclaimed Koper, " no more can no one 
else make it out, except that it is just what I said : she 
shows off her piety in that way. 'Now,' says I, 'Mrs. 
Tyrell * — I said this at dinner before them all — ' if my lady 
had made a point as you should go, would you have gone ? ' 
And she said flatly, no, she wouldn't, — not if it had cost her 
her situation ; for she didn't approve of the theater. ' Then,' 
says I, ' you must think yourself wiser and better than my 
lady, for she goes to the theater very often, and don't 
think it no harm. And then she said — would you be- 
lieve it, ma'am, and before us all ] — but I hardly like to 
repeat it." 

"What did she say?" asked Mrs. Wyndham eagerly, 
with heightened colour ; " it is your duty to tell me." 

"Well, then, she said that you would have to answer for 
it to God; and, after that, the conversation was very 
properly dropped. I couldn't have sat on there if it 
hadn't." 

Mrs. Wyndham remained silent a moment, with lips 
compressed and nearly white with anger. When she 
opened them it was to pour forth a violent and most 
unladylike tirade against the insolence of her servant. 
Tyrell's fate was sealed, and Koper saw that it was. 



THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 339 

CHAPTER XXX. 

DIVERS COMMUNICATIONS. 

The riding-party which Emma joined consisted of Miss 
Vincent and her sister Julia, their sailor brother, William, 
whose voice was reckoned upon for the coming Saturday 
and the cousin, Mr. Devereux, whose violoncello had also 
been pressed into the service. It was the thick of the 
season, and the most crowded time of day for the fashion- 
ables. After riding about for some time they had been 
standing listening to the band in Kensington Gardens and 
talking to friends for about half an hour, when Miss Vincent 
proposed that they should, now that the evening was cooler, 
take a gallop in Rotten Row. All being willing, they 
turned the heads of their steeds that way. Miss Vincent 
was riding in front with her cousin ; Julia, her brother, 
and Emma following. At this moment a gentleman on 
horseback, at some little distance, took off his hat to Emma. 
She did not at once discern who he was, and, though she 
returned the bow, which was distinctly made to herself, it 
was with an ambiguous expression, the result of hardly 
knowing what was her footing of intimacy with the indi- 
vidual. The ca^'alier, however, was not discouraged, but 
drew nearer in order to join the cavalcade. Emma then 
recognized Mr. Jardine, and coloured as she recollected the 
office which he had lately discharged for her lover. " I 
did not know you were an equestrian, Miss Wyndham," 
he said. "I do not recollect having previously had 
the pleasure of seeing you mounted. What a beautiful 
horse!" 

" Yes, Mustapha is a beauty," replied Emma, stooping 
over the animal's shoulder to caress it, and thus to hide the 

z 2 



340 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

blush whicli she felt mantling in her cheek. " I am often 
here, however, Mr. Jardine ; so you must have seen me, 
though you may not have noticed me." 

" That would be difficult," said Jardine. " Does your 
sister ride ? " 

*' Not in London, she is too timid ; but I often do with 
my brother." 

" He is not here to-day ? " said Jardine, looking round. 

" Xo, he is not here." 

By this time Julia and her brother had passed on and 
left Emma to follow with Mr. Jardine. " My friend 
Baines," said her companion, " was quite au desespoir at 
having to leave London so suddenly." As he said this he 
glanced furtively at Emma's face, to see how she took the 
mention of Baines's name. The young lady had by this 
time recovered her presence of mind, and merely replied 
that she supposed he had been summoned into Yorkshire. 
"Yes, the old gentleman can do nothing without him; 
there were papers to sign. Baines and I, Miss Wyndham, 
I must toll you, are like brothers — we were schoolfellows, 
and have carried on our early friendship, which is not often 
the case. AYe are very unlike in every way, as, no doubt, 
you can judge, short as has been my acquaintance with you ; 
that is, if you have condescended to form any opinion about 
me." 

"Yes, I should think you were very unlike." 

" But that makes no difference in the case of friendship. 
Often, I fancy, dissimilarity is an advantage. People fit 
each other better for not being dittos, and like each other 
all the better, too. I am sure I should not like a ditto 
of myself." Emma laughed. " This close and intimate 
friendship," continued Jardine, " which subsists between 
Frederick Baines and myself must be my excuse for ven- 
turing, on my short acquaintance with you, to be the bearer 
of a message from him." 



DIVERS COMMUNICATIONS. 341 

"A message I " repeated Emma, scarcely knoNvicg what 
to reply. 

"Frederick," proceeded Jardine, ''is the most generous, 
confiding, and, in some ways, incautious of men." He, in 
fact, gives others credit for the same openness of heart an<l 
sincerity as distinguish himself. He has made many friends 
by his fine qualities, but this carelessness has been the cause 
of his making some enemies also.'"' 

" Was this panegyric the substance of the message i " 
asked Emma, with a forced laugh, for in her embaiTassment 
she was chiefly possessed with the anxiety not to seem 
embarrassed. 

" Xo," said Jardine, " that is my preface, of course ; what 
he ^sished me to say was that he hoped you would give him 
some opportunity of explaining a recent incident. He was 
quite aware that he had enemies before it occurred, but 
what he dreads is that it should have made some impression 
on your own mind. All this he could not say in the few 
hurried lines he penned before starting for the train, and 
which I had the honour of leaving at your door." 

" Mr. Jardine," replied Emma, who, while he was deli- 
vering himself of this speech, had made up her mind what 
to say, '' I do not exactly know to what incident you refer, 
but I suppose you mean that Captain Baines is aware that 
he has been represented to me in an unfavourable light." 

" Just so," replied Jardine. 

" \V"ell, you may tell him that, when I have formed a 
fiivourable opinion of any one on good grounds, it is not 
easily shaken. I cannot, of course, answer for the impres- 
sion which might be produced by evil representations on 
others." 

" On Mrs. Wyndham ? " said Jardine. Emma assented. 
" Of course you cannot," he continued ; " and Mrs. "Wynd- 
ham would naturally yield the more ready credence to what 
came from her brother." 



342 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

Now, what with the noise made by the horses' hoofs and 
other sounds, together with the prepossession existing in her 
own mind, Emma thought he said " your brother" \ Uncle 
John was so completely liors de cause in her estimation that 
such a mistake was not surprising. " My mother," she 
said, " is almost certain to believe whatever Algernon says, 
and to side with him." 

" That is only natural," replied Jardine, without betray- 
ing himself. A light had burst in upon him, and he in- 
wardly rejoiced that he had not compromised himself. 
Evidently the Palermo incident had not, as yet, reached 
Emma's ears. 

" But I am much puzzled," continued that young lady, 
" as to what can have occurred between my brother and 
Captain Baines, or how Captain Baines should know that 
Algernon has endeavoured to prejudice me against him." 

" He must explain these things himself," replied Jardine. 
" All I will say is that he knows that your brother has 
hearkened to some unfounded calumnies affecting his cha- 
racter. Baines is the soul of honour, and feels this deeply ; 
and, above all, he is most keenly sensitive as respects your 
— your good opinion, Miss Wyndham." 

" Until I see reason to change this opinion, he may rely 
upon it I shall continue to think of him as before," replied 
Emma. 

" Those words of yours, which I will faithfully convey to 
him," answered Jardine, " will afford him the deepest satis- 
faction. He is likely to run up on Friday, though he must 
probably return into Yorkshire at the beginning of the 
week," 

" Now for a gallop," said Minny Yincent, looking round; 
and the whole party broke into a rapid canter. 

When they reined in their steeds at the end of Botten 
Row, Emma's face looked bright and joyous from the ex- 
hilarating exercise, the roses which it had called into her 



DIVERS COMMUXICATIONS. 343 

cheeks adding lustre to her fine dark eyes. She really 
looked very handsome, and Jardine, as he glanced at her, 
thought that, after all, his friend had not shown such bad 
taste j he could almost have fallen in love with the girl 
himself. As he could not, however, permit himself this 
amusement, he was content to pay his compliments to the 
hoi'se. " How splendidly your animal steps, Miss Wynd- 
ham ! " he said. Emma smiled very graciously, for Mustapha 
was a great pet ; but at this moment, and before the smile 
had faded from her lips, a, to her, unwelcome apparition 
came on the field of view. It was her brother Algernon. 
He bowed cordially to the Vincents, then, looking round at 
Jardine, he returned his recognition veiy coldly. 

"I have been in search of you all this half-hour," he 
said, addressing the party generally. " I expected to find 
you down by the Serpentine ; and I fancy we have been 
following each other like Evangeline and her lover, only the 
finale has been more fortunate." 

" You are quite wrong, Mr. Wyndham," replied Minny 
Vincent; "we have been standing for a long time in the 
crowd, listening to the band in the gardens." 

" Only that you were talking all the while yourself, 
Minny," said her brother William. 

" You saucy boy ! " replied Minny, half threatening him 
with the tiny whip in her little white-gloved hand — clearly 
no lover had yet come to mar the playful fraternal afiection. 

" You have been making up for the stancling since," ob- 
served Algernon ; *' I thought I should never catch you up. 
Splitting along ventre-a-terre in that way, on a hot summer's 
evening, is sharp work." 

" Oh, we never take more than one gallop ; but we must 
have one good gallop," replied Minny, " and, as we are not 
going home directly, our horses will have time to cool." 

" I must take my leave now, Miss Wyndham," said 
Jardine, who had looked at his watch in order to give the 



344 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

idea that he was leaving for his own convenience and not 
because he was put out of countenance by her brother's 
presence. *' Your dinner-hour, I think, on Saturday is 
lialf-past seven ; is it not ? " he added. 

" Yes, as nearly so as our guests enable us to make it/' 
replied Emma. _^ 

" I will be unfashionably punctual," he replied ; and then, 
bowing respectfully to her, and making a sort of sweeping 
salutation to her companions, in which he avoided meeting 
Algernon's eye, he turned his horse's head and galloped off 
in the Kensington direction. 

'' I did not think you were as intimate as that with Jar- 
dine," said Algernon to his sister. 

" As what 1 " she asked, dryly. 

" Intimate enough, I mean, for him to join you." 

" He joined me, not I him," answered Emma ; '* so you 
must take him to task, not me, for the familiarity, if so it is 
to be reckoned. I conclude he thought it allowable, as he is 
to dine with us on Saturday." 

No more was said ; Algernon moved on to join one of the 
Yincent girls, William Yincent falling into the vacant place 
by Emma ; and so the cavalcade proceeded for about a 
quarter of an hour, when Miss Yincent said, ' We must be 
turning homewards, for I find it is getting late. Papa likes 
his dinner punctually at a quarter past seven. We cannot 
get him beyond that ; so, after we have seen you to Berkeley 
Square, Emma, we shall not have much spare time to get 
back to dress." 

*•' I will take care of my sister," said Algernon ; " so you 
can wash your hands of her." They were then near Gros- 
venor Gate, and the Yincents, who had run the time short, 
as young people are apt to do, were glad to resign their 
charge and hasten home, forgetting, I fear, to take their 
horses in cool. Emma did not enjoy the thoughts of her iete- 
ci-tete ride, nor did Algernon, for very good reasons. He 



DIVERS COMMUNICATIONS. 345 

had an unpleasant task before him, and he disliked un- 
pleasant tasks mightily, having inherited his father's 
aversion to being bothered. But it must be done ; so he 
would acquit himself of his commission at once. No pre- 
paration could make what he had to say palatable, as he 
knew very well ; besides, there was short time for ifes 
delivery. '' Emma," he said, after a brief pause, " I have 
a message for you from my mother, of which I am the 
reluctant bearer ; indeed, but that she insisted, not wishing 
herself to have any conversation with you on the subject, I 
should have declined to interfere." He paused a moment, 
but, as his sister remained silent, he went on. '• We have 
heard a very bad character of Baines, and my mother wishes 
the acquaintance to be dropped." 

" How can I cut a gentleman I know so well as Captain 
Baines ; and that for no ostensible reason 1 " asked Emma, 
commanding her inward emotion as well as she could. 

" You need not positively cut him ; should he bow, you 
can return it in such a manner as shall give him to under- 
stand that he is not expected to speak to you. Should he 
speak, however, you must answer very shortly, and show 
by your manner that you do not desire to continue your 
acquaintance with him. He will take the hint, no doubt." 

'' And pray, why am I to act in this strange way ? " 

" Not strange, if you knew the circumstances ; and surely 
it is enough for you to know that circumstances there are 
which make him an unsuitable acquaintance for you ; and, 
indeed, for any of us." 

'• And what are those cii'cumstances ? " asked Emma. 
" Only tell me what they are, and what is your authority for 
believing them ? " 

*' You might trust 7ne, I think ; not to speak of my 
mother. We both of us liked Baines ; I was very intimate 
with him, as you know ; you cannot suppose that we should 
cast him off without f>ood cause." 



346 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

" Tlien why all tliis mystery 1 If you can prove your 
point, why do not you speak out plainly] If you are 
unwilling to do so, can you wonder that I should suspect 
you have given heed to some calumnious report, very likely 
a most unfounded one, but that you think it safest to 
believe it or, at least, to act upon it lest it should be true 1 
At the same time I suspect you know very well that I 
should not consider that there was evidence to support it. 
I, too, like Captain Baines ; and I do think it is most un- 
reasonable to require me to cut a gentleman I like and value 
without knowing why or wherefore I am to do so disagree- 
able a thing. It is persecution to press me to it. I simply 
cannot." 

" Emma, you are the most foolish and obstinate girl I 
ever met." This w^as a gTeat deal from her good-tempered 
and easy brother. Her face flamed with anger, and, seeing 
her about to burst forth in some vehement response, 
Algernon added, " You need not fear my persecuting you, 
Emma. I have given you my mother's message, as I was 
bound to do, and have now done with the business ; so you 
must settle it with my mother — and with my father." 

The mention of her father sobered Emma somewhat. 
" Has my father been spoken to, then ? " she asked. 

" Not by me ; that is all I can tell you. Only, I suppose, 
if my mother cannot get you to hear reason, she will have 
to call for my father's interference." 

''Algernon," said Emma, " I am quite willing to listen 
to reason, but I am not a person to be led blindfold. As 
soon as it is proved to me that Captain Baines is worthless, 
I shall be the first to turn my back upon him ; but my 
sense of justice, if that were all, forbids my behaving rudely 
and unkindly, until I see cause why I should put another, 
and myself also, to so much pain." 

"You must go your own way," was her brother's curt 
rejoinder. 



DIVERS COMMUNICATIONS. 347 

AVhen tliey reached the door of the house in Berkeley- 
Square, after helping his sister as usual to alight, Algernon 
rode off, and Emma entered alone. 

During her absence a communication of another sort 
had been made, of ^Yhich the reader must be apprised. 
Mrs. Wyndham had formed a hasty resolution — namely, 
to part at once with Tyrell. She was inwardly conscious 
that this resolution ivas a hasty one, and the offspring of 
temper, but she was bent on giving her offended pride this 
satisfaction ; and it must be given at once, or she might lose 
the bitter pleasure altogether. She remembered that Emma 
had recently opposed her parting with Tyrell, and she would 
probably do so again — a supposition in which she was, how- 
ever, mistaken. Kow, she knew that it was very difficult 
for her to mthstand her daughter ; besides, at the bottom 
of her heart, Mrs. Wyndham hei^self did not desire to part 
vv'ith Tyrell, and reason, she was aware, would recover its 
sway when her anger had subsided. She knew her to be 
honest, trustworthy, and economical, and as good a cook as 
could possibly be expected for her very moderate wages. 
^Moreover, Mrs. Wyndham had gone through a good deal of 
trouble with her previous cooks. With Tyrell she had 
experienced none. No complaints had ever reached her ears, 
and there was peace in the household, such as there had 
never been for any length of time before. Even the affair 
of the play would probably have appeared less offensive 
iipon reflection, and a doubt might have arisen as to the 
precise import of the conversation retailed. At present Mrs. 
Wyndham's anger was at white heat, and she was unable to 
weigh reasons or to consider anything calmly. 

So she sent for Tyrell and gave her warning. " I can 
put up with a good deal," she said, " but there are some 
things which self-respect forbids me to overlook. Insolence 
is one of these things. I cannot suffer a servant of mine to 
hold me up for censure to the rest of my household. There 



348 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

is an end of all authority if this be allowed. You must be 
aware, Mrs. Tyrell, that this is what you have done. I 
offered to send you to the play, with the view of giving 
you some amusement. Of course you were free to decline, 
but common gratitude and respect might, at least, have 
imposed silence on you, and deterred you from haranguing 
my other domestics on the impropriety of play-going, and 
on the account we shall have to give to God, myself in- 
cluded, for partaking in these unlawful diversions, as you 
are pleased to consider them." Then Mrs. Wyndham paused 
— she expected, perhaps half hoped, to hear some justifica- 
tion^ explanation, or excuse from the lips of her servant ; 
but, as Tyrell remained silent, she raised her eyes, which 
had been fixed on the cover of a book while she delivered 
herself of this speech, got by heart l)eforehand, and then 
she saw the same radiant expression on Tyrell's countenance 
which she had remarked on a previous occasion. This 
irritated Mrs. Wyndham afresh. " Have you anything to 
say in your defence 1 " she asked. 

" Nothing," replied Tyrell. 

" You cannot, then, be surprised," resumed Mrs. Wynd- 
ham, " if I should be undesirous that a person who speaks 
in this offensive manner should remain any longer than is 
absolutely necessary under my roof. To-day is Wednesday ; 
I give you to this day -week to make your arrangements, 
and I will then pay what I owe you, and also the remainder 
of the month's wages. 

" Thank you, ma'am," said Tyrell, and retired. She went 
down to the housekeeper's room, and sat for a moment before 
the table, her head resting on her hands. She was thinking. 
She had been accused of what she had not done^ and had 
not said a word to exculpate herself. She was utterly friend- 
less, and, with the exception of three pounds remaining to 
her from her wages, and her clothes, which were of little 
value, she had no earthly possession. Her hand had ever 



DIVERS COMMUNICATIONS. 349 

been open to the poor, and, had she not been recently paid 
her quarter's wages, there would probably not have been 
nearly as much as those three pounds in her purse. Under 
these circumstances, was it right in her to have made no 
effort to retain her situation ? " Yes," she said to herself, 
*^' I have done right." She had years before made a pact 
with her God that she would never justify or excuse herself 
unless duty or charity required her to do so. And neither 
duty nor charity had required it; nay, she could not 
have justified herself save by accusing another. She had 
been silent, and would remain so, were starvation to be the 
consequence. She drew some well-worn tablets from her 
pocket, and read what was ^Titten in them, probably the 
pact of which I have spoken ; then she took the pencil 
and added these words : Non loquendo, sed moriendo, 
confessi sunt. — " Yes, that shall be my motto for ever ; I 
will die, but not speak." 

The reader may ask whether that was a wise and good 
resolve. Good for those who can make it, and, above all, 
keep it ; and who are divinely moved to make such a 
sacrifice ; but to the many, no doubt, such a determination 
would be a snare. Tyi-ell, however, was not an ordinary 
Christian ; there are few of her class, though possibly more 
than is suspected, for the world knows them not, or mis- 
understands them. There was deep peace in the heart of 
this lonely one; while j^erhaps at that moment there were 
no two persons in the house more miserably uncomfortable 
than Mrs. Wyndham and Mrs. Roper — Mrs. Wyndham, 
because conscious of having done a foolish and perhaps 
an unjust thing ; and Mrs. Roper, because her conscience 
stung her for having been both false and treacherous. ; 

So occupied was the lady with her own reflections, as she 
sat in the back di-a wing-room, that she was not aware of 
Emma's return until she entered in her riding-habit. Mrs. 
Wyndham did not know that Algernon had brought his 



350 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

sister home, and had hardly expected that he would have 
found any opportunity for private conversation during the 
ride, so that she did not suppose that the dreaded communi- 
cation had already been made, particularly as Emma's 
countenance did not evince disturbance. She was flushed, 
it was true, but that was not remarkable considering the 
heat of the day and the exercise she had been taking ; and, 
while running up stairs, she had rapidly come to a resolution 
regarding her own behaviour. Her mother, she knew, did 
not wish to talk the subject over with her, and she, on her 
part, thought it wise not to provoke her in any way to 
depart from this purpose — for what was the use 1 Emma 
felt she must now take her own line, whatever that might 
be ; discvission could profit her nothing, and might be very 
hurtful. Resolved as she was not to give up her lover, she 
knew that, if she rashly betrayed her determination,- her 
mother might take the alarm, and speak to her father. And 
so she determined to be impenetrable, and to behave as 
usual, so as to disarm suspicions. 

*' My love," exclaimed her mother, with a start, " I did 
not hear you arrive. Do you know I have been doing- 
something in your absence which I fear you will not 
like." 

" What is that ? " asked the daughter, in some alarm, for 
her head was full of her own aflair. 

" I have given Tyrell warning." 

" Is that all ? " said Emma, quite relieved ; "■ well, it was 
sure to come to that at last." Then Mrs. Wyndham told 
her story. " I think you did quite right. Mama ; indeed, 
I do not see what else you could do. Tyrell did not deny 
the charge ; so, of course, it was true." 

" Well, I am sure I don't know," replied Mrs. "Wyndham. 
" I dare say Roper made the most of it, but I am so glad 
you do not blame me. Tjrell is such an odd person, one 
cannot make her out. She looked all up in the skies 



DIVERS COMMUNICATIONS. 351 

again, the same as the other day ; not like a guilty person 
at all." 

" Because she does not think herself a guilty person. 
She testified, and now she is a martyr, she thinks, for 
having testified. I should not wonder if she went mad 
some day." 

'' Poor thing ! " ejaculated Mrs. "Wyndham. wlio had con- 
siderably cooled down now that her pride had received its 
satisfaction, and who almost, if not quite, regretted the step 
she had taken. 

^- Emma perceived the relenting mood, and, as she was now 
desirous on her own account to get rid of Tyrell, she was 
resolved to keep her mother up to the mark. "It is done 
now, Mama ; and I am sure it is a good thing over. Papa 
would never have been easy till she was dismissed. If 
I were you I would send Mary off, too, at once ; otherwise 
you will lose a good chance. Minny has a girl there who 
will suit us well ; she is as strong as a horse, and has never 
been in a London place. They have been kindly giving 
her a bed, and looking out for a situation for her, but the 
bed will be wanted next week, so Minny must send her 
iwotegee back into Wiltshire if she is not suited." 

" I shall have to pay the month's wages to Mary as well 
as to Tyrell," said her mother, doubtingly. 

" That is not much, Mama ; and this other girl will be 
satisfied with eight pounds — Mary had ten." 

" But it may seem harsh to be so hasty," urged Mrs. 
"Wyndham. 

" It will be a positive kindness," replied Emma. " Maiy 
is losing her health in London ; she is just like one walking 
in her sleep -^ so the sooner she is back in the country the 
better." 

Emma, as usual, prevailed. But there must be a substitute 
found for Tyrell, and that within a week. Here was 
another dilemma. " Perhaps, Mama," said Emma, " we 



UBRARV 



UN1V£RS\TV Of ni^^ 



352 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

may hear of some one glad to come for the next two 
months. If you have to pay a little more you will save the 
board-wages, which the cook must have had while we were 
at the sea-side." 

In short, Emma smoothed away all difficulties so cheer- 
fully that Mrs. Wyndham's equanimity was pretty well 
restored. " What a treasure Emma is ! " thought the poor 
mother. She had, however, been so very doubtful, only a 
few hours before, as to what the state of the " treasure's " 
temper might be on her return from her ride — during which 
it was just possible that Algernon might have found an 
opportunity for delivering his message — that she had made 
Gertrude write an excuse to Madame d'Hericourt and give 
up dining out that day. Her presence would relieve Mrs. 
Wyndham from being thrown entirely upon Emma's society 
during the evening. So poor Gertrude had been sacrificed ; 
and it was a great sacrifice. 

" I suppose," said Emma, '' Gertrude is gone long ago." 

" She is not gone at all," replied her mother. " We shall 
be out, you know, to-morrow night, and I thought she had 
best keep quiet." 

Emma was sharp enough to divine the real motive, and 
was, indeed, too well used to her mother's " white lies " 
ever to give more credit to her veracity than the case seemed 
to warrant ; but, of course, she kept this knowledge, like 
many other things, to herself 



THE WYXDHAM FAMILY. 353 

CHAPTER XXXI. 

THE DINNER AT MADAME d'hERICOURT's. 

We must go back an hour or two. John Sanders came up 
to the drawing-room ready to start, at about a quarter to 
six. He found Gertrude there. 

'' Please to look at me," he said to his niece. " "What 
do you think of me ? How do you like me 1 " 

'' Yery much, uncle." 

" But how do I look, particularly when I grin 1 " 

'' Oh, your teeth, uncle ! I see now ; you have got your 
new teeth. How they improve you ! " 

" Don't they ! "Why, I look quite young again. Madame 
d'Hericourt will take the alarm, I fear, and shut her door 
against me, as one belonging to the dangerous classes." 

" The dangerous classes 1 " 

" Gay young men, I mean, to be sure." 

*' I do not think she will be afraid of you," replied his 
niece, laughing. 

" Well, I never can get a compliment out of you, 
Gertrude." 

" But it is a compliment ; I mean you look steady and 
good. She would let you in if you were ever so young. 
She does not shut out all young men ; there is a Mr. Koch- 
fort who goes there, and, between ourselves, uncle, if you 
will not betray me, I fancy, or, rather, Emma fancied, that 
she wants Anne to marry him, and that that is one reason 
why she discourages Algernon. She thinks Mr. Bochfort 
very good, and so he is indeed, though he is not near as 
handsome or agreeable as Algernon." 

" So Mama likes the steady one best, and Miss the showy 
one." 

" Please don't repeat this," said Gertrude imploringly. 
2 a 



354 THE ■\\-YXDHAM FAMILY. 

"Oil, no," said lier uncle, with a funny face of deep 
mystery. " Now I must be going ; there comes my cab." 

" Uncle," said Gertrude, " I am so vexed, so cross, that I 
cannot go with you ! I should have liked to go with you 
so very much." 

" You must not be cross, chick." 

" I cannot help it ; and it seems for no reason at all that 
I am kept at home ; that is why I am so particularly cross." 

" All the same, you must not be cross. I will give you 
a feminine reason : if you are cross, you will look cross, and 
that will spoil all your beauty. My chicken's beauty is her 
sweetness ; she is not a sort of Clorinda, who could look 
handsome in a blaze of anger ; not but that I am rather a 
sceptic about looks w^hich are dolci nell 'ira, but, if there are 
such looks, you cannot deal in them, for sure, my pretty, 
you would only look peevish ; so you must be satisfied with 
looking sweet, like an Erminia." 

" Oh, uncle, you have read Tasso ! " ''' 

"Yes, I have read Tasso. Did you think I had read 
nothing, and had always had my nose in a wine-cask?" 
Gertrude laughed, and threw her arm affectionately rotmd 
him. He drew her fondly towards him and kissed her fore- 
head. " God bless you, dear one," he said ; " I am as sorry 
not to take you with me as you can be to be left behind." 

Before Uncle John arrives, we will listen to a short 
dialogue which had taken place between Madame d'Hericourt 
and Eustace Rochfort, when he called the previous morning 
to give his answer in person to her invitation to dinner. 
Eustace, as the reader knows, was very grave. His exterior 
gravity was, to a great degree, the exponent of his sterling _ 
goodness. Life was a serious thing with him ; he deeply 
realised its significance, its importance. He lived in the 
Divine presence, and had a correspondingly strong sense of 
the hatefulness of sin, and an abiding fear of offending God 
by word, look, or deed. Well is it when a young man 



THE DINNER AT MADAME d'hERICOURT's. 355 

walks thus cautiously, even if lie should walk, in conse- 
quence, a little stiffly. Algernon's freedom might be, and 
was, graceful ; but how much carelessness of evil lay beneath 
it I Still such stiffness is, in itself, far from a merit ; it is 
an imperfection. Eustace's temperament inclined him, if 
not to severity — he had too warm and feeling a heart to be 
severe— yet to a certain reserve and excessive seriousness 
which is apt to repel rather than attract, in the young 
particularly. 

So strongly had Madame d'Hericourt felt what must be 
the impression he was calculated to make, especially by 
contrast with his engaging rival, now that disappointment 
had added a fresh shade to his brow, that, it will be remem- 
bered, she advised him to be very sparing of his visits at her 
house. She had now asked him to dinner, at the suggestion 
of Anne herself : so, when Eustace came to give his answer 
in person, she thought it well to offer him a few w^ords of 
advice about his behaviour. " You will not take it ill of 
me, I am sure," she said, " if I recommend you to cultivate 
a little more cheerful ease of manner in society. You fail 
to do yourself justice, Eustace. You must try and break 
through your shyness." 

" I am aware," he replied, " of my fault, and should be 
glad, any way, to be told of it by you, my kindest of friends. 
Unfortunately, the deep disappointment under which I am 
suffering makes the struggle to be gay a very arduous one.''' 
*' There will be the more merit in making it," replied the 
lady. '■ It is a charitable duty to society, both because it is. 
kind to make others feel at their ease, and because we must 
avoid giving the idea that our good principles make us 
morose or rigid. I should be afraid to dwell much upon 
the duty of endeavouring to please, when speaking to most 
young persons, for fear of encouraging vanity^ but I know 
there is no danger of that sort with you. The danger lies 
another way." 

2 A 2 



356 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

" I really will try and follow your advice," replied the 
young man. 

" And do not be too wise, Eustace ; unbend somewhat. 
If you would even be a little foolish sometimes, people would 
like you all the better. Perhaps you may say that I preach 
but do not practise ; but, then, remember that I have 
passed my youth ; I am a mother and a widow ; no one 
•expects me to be frolicsome, it would be out of place ; but 
some natural joyousness of manner is looked for in those 
who are only entering life." 

" Ah ! " said Eustace mournfully, " I wish I had the talent 
of some who have the gift of pleasing and of saying light 
airy things, upon whom everything sits gracefully, while 
others, like myself, have only the power to love — to love, 
perhaps, far deeper than they do." 

'' Never mind about that," said Madame d'Hericourt ; 
*' dismiss those thoughts and those comparisons, and act 
naturally, and as, I think, you ought to act. In so doing 
you will also be acting with the most prudence, and this 
may come in as a secondary motive. I know you cannot as 
yet resign yourself to the disappointment of your hopes as 
regards my daughter. I should be very sorry to say a word 
which might indiscreetly re-awaken them ; for, indeed, at 
present there is no ground whatsoever for fostering them. 
Still, I will say one thing : I do not think that my child 
has by any means, as yet, made up her mind to accept 
Mr. Wyndham, even if she had my consent, which remains 
at present in abeyance. Meanwhile, she is weighing the 
whole subject with a calmness and an impartiality which 
do her infinite credit. I should not myself be surprised 
should she end in thinking that such a marriage does not 
offer to her suf&cient guarantees of solid happiness.'' 
Eustace's countenance brightened up. " Of course," added 
his friend, " supposing she should reject him, and supposing 
also that no vocation for the religious life should develop 



THE DINNER AT MADAME d'hERICOURT's. 357 

itself, it would still remain doubtful whether you could 
succeed in winning her affections ; but, believe me, if you 
wish to avoid what would make this undertaking more 
difficult, you mil behave as I have advised. Do not let 
her suspect that you have ever entertained a thought of her 
as your future wife. It would only make her extremely 
uncomfortable, and thus a distant feeling would spring up 
between you. It will be time enough if ever she accepts 
you, to tell her you have loved her almost from childhood ; 
at present it will be wise in you to satisfy yourself with 
cultivating the friendship which she undoubtedly cherishes 
for you, and to behave with the ease and confidence which 
are warranted by long and intimate acquaintance." 

This was good advice, and Eustace Eochfort knew that 
it was. 

John Sanders arrived nearly half an hour before the 
dinner-time, for which piece of extra punctuality he apolo- 
gised. Madame d'Hericourt, however, was ready to receive 
him, and glad to have some more talk with her new friend 
before the other guests made their appearance. " I am so 
sorry," she said, " that dear Gertrude could not come." 

" And so am I not to bring her, but Mama said ' No,'' 
and, for the life of me, I cannot see why. Emma is never 
contradicted ; my nephew has but to look a wish: it seems 
to be only poor Gertrude who ever gets a check." 

" Algernon is evidently a great favourite." 

" You 77ia)/ say that. Mama treats him like an emperor. 
Papa does not seem quite so loving." 

" Of that I had no oppoi-tunity of judging. I have seen 
Mr. Wyndham only once or twice, and never in his son's 
company." 

" You saw a good deal of my nephew, I know," said 
Sanders ; " and I know something more," he added, 
winking significantly — "as a secret, of course." 

Madame d'Hericourt smiled. " I concluded," she said. 



"358 THE WYNDHAil FAJIILY. 

" that Algernon had told his mother, and your sister would 
naturally tell you ; but Mrs. Wyndham and I have had no 
conversation on the subject. Indeed, there was nothing to 
converse about, and I should have felt awkward had she 
broached the subject." 

"You don't mind my having done so, I hope," said 
Sanders. " I fear that I blunder sometimes." 

"IS'ot in the least. The sole reason that would have 
made me feel uncomfortable in Mrs. Wyndham's case is 
that she clearly thinks her son perfection, while I have 
required a certain period of probation, which seems to 
imply a doubt on that head. But one cannot be too careful 
in a matter of this kind. I have endeavoured to bring up 
Anne in what the world would call rather a strict way. 
She has quiet and retired tastes, and would be entirely 
unfitted for the wife of a man of the world, even supposing 
his religious principles, and moral character generally, to 
be ever so good. She thinks so herself." 

" I know very little about my nephew," said Sanders, 
^' except that he is good-looking and pleasant-spoken, and, 
I should say, good-tempered, so far as I can judge; but I 
think you are very wise to be cautious in so serious a 
business." 

" Believe me, I should not be guilty of the bad taste of 
asking your opinion of your own nephew," replied Madame 
d'Hericourt. " I was not even indirectly seeking to know 
it." 

" You are very welcome, Madame, to know it. My sister, 
of course, would be ready to make mincemeat of me if I 
did not cry her darling up to the skies, but that is not my 
way. Truth before everything ; and I do not think there 
is a bit of kindness, but quite the contrary, in helping on 
unsuitable matches. As it happens, I know very little, as 
I said, of this nephew of mine. He is a ball-going, club- 
going young man at present, no doubt. Perhaps he might 



THE DINNER AT MADAME d'heEICOURt's. 359 

prefer a quiet fireside and a good wife — there's no saying. 
He thinks so, I dare say, just now. As for his religious 
principles — well — I literally know naught about them ; 
but, if I were you, I should put him well through his 
catechiiim before I gave my daughter to him." 

"Algernon Wyndham," replied Madame d'Hericourt, 
''is not one whom it would be easy to put through his 
catechism. You would find him slip through your fingers in 
the most graceful manner, if you tried to bring him to book." 

"I would pin him, however," said Sanders; "would 
not I ? If people slip about in that way I get suspicious." 

"And then," continued his new friend, " I must confess 
to a Aveakness — there is something very engaging about the 
young man. "When you are talking to him, he contrives 
to get round you. You cannot help liking him, and he is 
so natural in his manner that every suspicion is lulled to 
sleep for the time. Besides, he does not go deep into any 
subject ; so you have no opportunity of probing him, if 
you would ; and there is a gentle playful wit about him 
which would turn away your knife, I think, if you ventured 
on any such operation." 

The conversation w^as here interrupted by the arrival of 
Eustace Rochfort. Soon after, the young ladies made their 
appearance. Anne shook hands very cordially with Eustace. 
" We have not seen you for a long tiQ:>e, Mr. Eochfort," she 
said. 

" I have been very busy, with my nose buried in law 
books lately," he replied — (Eustace was studying for the 
Bar, and was reading very hard, so this was no untruth), — 
" and I have felt so dull and stupid most evenings, that I 
have thought it best not to inflict my company on my 
friends, even when I could have spared an hour. I am 
more at leisure now, and, I hope, less stupid." 

" Business must, of course, have the first place," replied 
Anne, who thought she must say something. 



360 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

*' * Business first/ they say, ' and pleasure afterwards/ " 
replied Eustace, who also thought he must say something, 
in order to comply with the advice he had received ; " but, 
nnfortunately, I shall be cheated of the pleasure, for I find 
you are going away very soon. No more of our pleasant 
reading evenings for a long time to come. They seem 
quite a thing of the past and of a bygone epoch. But we 
are all getting into the serious work of life now ; at least, I 
am j and, as I expect to be called to the Bar next spring, I 
have scant time for recreation." This speech, and, above 
all, the exterior cheerfulness of its delivery, cost Eustace a 
great effort, for which, it is to be hoped, the reader gives 
him due credit. 

" I should not like to be a lawyer/' observed Pauline. 

" Wiiat profession would you like, Poll 1" asked Anne. 

" Not to be a soldier and get killed, nor a sailor and get 
drowned." 

" Civil engineering, I think, might suit you," suggested 
Anne ; " you are very bright at mathematics and thatsort 
of thing." 

'• Indeed ! " said Eustace. 

'• Why that ' indeed,' Mr. Kochfort 1 Do you think I am 
bright at nothing ? " asked Pauline. " But I don't enjoy 
the mathematics particularly. I fancy I should have made 
a good surgeon — that is, for small jobs ; for I should not 
have liked cutting off legs. But I get thorns out of fingers 
very well." 

" Do you, indeed ? " interposed John Sanders, who had 
been listening to the young people's conversation while 
Madame d'Hericourt was reading a note slie had just 
received. "Then you shall operate on my hand. I have a 
small splinter in it." Pauline was delighted, and got out 
her needle forthwith. '' Be merciful, however, for my skin 
is so delicate," said Sanders. 

They went to the recess of the bay window, whence 



THE DINNER AT MADAME d'hERICOURT's. 361 

might be heard Pauline's merry langh as the patient 
affected to cry out with pain. " The skin — the epidermis, 
T think doctors call it — is so thick, Mr. Sanders ; it is not 
delicate at all," exclaimed the lively ojDerator. 

'• The Abbe, unfortunately, cannot come," said Madame 
d'Hericourt to her daughter Anne and to Mr. Rochfort, 
who both expressed their regret. '' We have dwindled 
doAvn to six." Pauline did not dine with them. 

At this moment a knock announced Padre Giglio's 
arrival. He was accompanied by a Mr. Pierpoint, a mem- 
ber of the Warwick-street congregation, and a friend both 
of Madame d'Hericourt and of Rochfort, although con- 
siderably the latter's senior. It need scarcely be added that 
he was a good Catholic. He was also a very active member 
of the Brotherhood of St. Vincent of Paul, and untiring in 
his exertions in all works of charity. This information 
Madame d'Hericourt communicated to Mr. Sanders {y^ho 
had escaped from the young surgeon's hands) while the two 
guests were on their way up-stairs. 

" My good friend Mr. Sandei-s, it pleases me so much to 
see you ! " exclaimed Padre Giglio, as he clasped his friend's 
hand in both of his with affectionate cordiality. " What a 
good fortune ! And how are you, dear friend ? and la 
Teresa — how is she?" And then he clapped his friend on 
the shoulder, and almost hugged him, with that overflowing 
warmth which is so characteristic of the foreign, and espe- 
cially of the Italian, priest, in whom the tender charity of 
the sacerdotal heart is unchecked in its expression by the 
reserve which our insular manners impose. There were 
many questions to ask and to answer, and then dinner was 
announced, and they all went down. 

Eustace, by Madame d'Hericourt's desire, took his place 
at the bottom of her table, having Anne on one side and 
Mr. Pierpoint on the other, while she herself was seated 
between Padre Giglio and Sanders. The conversation was 



362 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

pretty general ; it never flagged, and the subjects started, 
as well as the mode in which they were treated, were such 
as must interest sensible men and women, and, above all, 
Christian men and women. Not that they were by any 
means always directly religious ; but just as in a worldly 
•circle, albeit the conversation may not be invariably what 
we characterize as essentially worldly, the spirit of the world 
will commonly underlie and pervade what is said, so in the 
party gathered round Madame d'Hericourt's board, the con- 
versation had in it a savour of heavenly things, even when 
the topics were on the surface merely earthly and occupied 
with only temporal concerus. Nor was the element of 
wit wanting. Padre Giglio was in that respect eminently 
gifted. Many amongst us can recall to mind the marvellous 
effect produced by the union of the sublimest pathos with 
the keenest and most caustic satire in the preaching of 
his fellow-countrymen who have given public missions or 
retreats in our land, and of one, above all, whom they 
who were so fortunate as to hear never can forget. They 
will remember how at one moment he could thrill and 
electrify his hearers by bursts of the most touching elo- 
quence, and at the next make some cutting, though playful 
hit, or call up some ludicrous image, for the condemnation 
of vice and folly, which it cost them an effort to listen to 
with becoming decorum. Padre Giglio had his share of 
this species of talent, by no means rare among Italians, and 
especially among Italians of the South — the Padre was a 
Sicilian. Sanders had a good deal of mother wit himself, 
and could always take his share pleasantly when it was a 
question of harmless, but not therefore aimless, fun. He 
had also the advantage of perfect acquaintance with Padre 
Giglio's fatherland and with Italian life ; so that the two 
played each other off admirably, to the hearty amusement 
of the whole party. 

Eustace Hochfort also mingled in the conversation, espe- 



THE DINNER AT MADAME d'hERICOURT's. 363 

cially when it turned on any solid or practical subject, in a 
manner which was extremely creditable to so young a man, 
his pertinent remarks bespeaking both the observer and the 
thinker. PerhajDS Eustace had never come forward as much, 
or said as many words together, in company before. He 
obliged himself to do so, yet his manner was perfectly 
natural, and the thoughts he expressed were the genuine 
utterances of what was passing in his mind at the moment 
or was evoked by what others put forth. It was no 
making of conversation on his part ; it was simply the 
taking an embargo off his tongue and allowing him- 
self to speak. Eustace Rochfort was one of those 
rare characters who would prefer that others should 
speak to speaking themselves. So reserved and devoid of 
vanity was he that, in all simplicity and from preference, 
he would withhold even the most pertinent observation if 
he thought another person in the company might say, or 
was likely to say, what was equivalent, or what in his 
modesty he esteemed better worth hearing. So far from 
regretting that others should be beforehand with him and, 
so to say, take the words out of his mouth and get the 
credit for furnishing information which he could have sup- 
plied as well or better, he lent himself habitually to such a 
result. Hence Eustace was a very silent person in society, 
and might often, for any effort he made to prove the con- 
trary, have been supposed to have nothing to say where he 
had really a great deal. Now, however, in compliance with 
the counsel he had received, he spoke out what occurred to 
him, and the consequence was that he made himself for the 
first time in his life verv agreeable in a general circle. 

Anne held her tongue, and added nothing to the conver- 
sation, but not a word was lost upon her, as her intelligent 
countenance proved. She was an excellent listener ; on 
this occasion there was perhaps the less merit, inasmuch 
as the conversation rewarded attention ; but, when it was 



364 THE WYXDHAM FAMILY. 

otlierwise, Anne was none the less sure to give attentive 
heed to what others said. She never practised the art, 
so common in society, of seeming to listen while we give 
our thoughts licence to be three parts elsewhere. Poor 
Gertrude, who, had she been present at the regretted 
dinner-party, Avould have listened as well as Anne, was by 
no means a conscientious listener when not interested. 
But Madame d'Hericourt had impressed this duty strongly 
on her daughter. It was a part, she considered, of Chris- 
tian courtesy, and Madame d'Hericourt was both a thorough 
lady and a thorough Christian. *' ' Do unto others,' " she 
would say, " ' as you would they should do unto you,' 
even when your acting otherwise seems to be of no im- 
portance, and would not be detected. Which of us would 
like to be spending our observations on a pretended lis- 
tener?" Now and then Eustace would make an observa- 
tion to Anne, suggested by the subject in hand, to which 
she would reply briefly, but always to the purpose. 

The gentlemen rose from table with the ladies, after 
the foreign fashion, and all went upstairs together. They 
found Pauline in the drawing-room, sitting in the open bay 
window, with her kitten and a book upon her lap. 

" How much of that book have you been reading. Ma- 
demoiselle Pauline 1 " asked Eustace. 

" I have read a few scraj^s now and then," she can- 
didly replied ; " but I have been watching the riding 
parties coming back from the Park ; and so has pussy," 
and she buried her nose affectionately in its fur. 

" Very like a pussy yourself, I think, Poll," said her 
sister. " You have your eyes after everything." 

" Do you know, Mr. Rochfort," said Pauline, " if 
Anne were sitting at the table three yards from the win- 
dow, and a troop of horse went by, drums beating and 
colours flying, she would not raise her eyes from her book, 
or take the trouble to get up to go and look at it." 



THE DINNER AT MADAME d'hERICOURT's. 365 

" I can quite imagine that," replied Roclifort. " On tlie 
other hand, all the housemaids in the street would have their 
heads stretching out of the windows to stare at the soldiers." 

" That shows that it is human nature," replied Pauline, 
" and one likes people to be human creatures." 

" I am very human about flowers, at all events ; how 
delicious these smell ! " said Anne, stooping over an orna- 
mental flower-stand in the window. 

''It is the tuberoses," observed Eustace, " which are so 
sweet. There is something in the smell of flowers," he 
continued, " which gives me a sense of pleasure and of sad- 
ness at the same time." 

'• I know that feeling so well," replied Anne, with a 
bright smile, and I was saying so to some one the other day, 
who could not at all understand what I meant. Who was 
it ? Oh, I remember now," she added with a slight blush, 
'' it was Emma Wyndham. She said that if she was sad 
she always knew what had made her so." 

" Undoubtedly there are associations whose touches are 
so evanescent as to evade our scrutiny," replied Eustace. 
" However, I think I partly know why the smell of the 
flowers of early summer makes me feel sad. I was brought 
up in the country and loved it ; my lot now shuts me up 
in a town. Nothing recalls a time or a place so intimately 
as the sense of smell. It is more than a reminding. It 
brings everything back in a manner which quite tran- 
scends memory." 

"That is very true," said Anne ; '' but will you uot be 
able to go and breathe a little country air soon 1 " 

" Not, I fear, until late in the autumn, when I must get 
some change for two or three weeks. So, when you are 
revelling amidst summer sights and sounds at Hericourt 
and picking violets in the woods, you must sometimes give 
me a pitying thought in my dingy rooms, with my head 
bent over musty books." 



366 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

" Indeed we will," replied Anne. 

" I don't pity you at all," said Pauline ; " you do it be- 
cause you like it. You need not be a lawyer, if you do not 
choose ; and I dare say you look to being a judge some 
day — 2^61'^^^ps Lord Chancellor. You have all these great 
things to yourselves ; we never can be anything but plain 
women, so must not be grudged our little pleasures." 

" Not plcdn,^^ said Eustace, laughing. " Besides, I do 
not gi'udge you your pleasures ; I only wish to share 
them." 

" Which is greedy of you. However, I am glad you 
do not think us 'plain,' " said the merry girl ; "it is the 
first attempt at a compliment I ever heard you make, Mr. 
Rochfort — Je vous en feds mon compliment Perhaps next 
time we shall arrive at being pretty." 

" You saucy girl ! " said Anne ; "you let your tongue run 
away with you — you do indeed." If Mrs. Wyndham had 
been j^resent, she might have been inclined to recall her 
opinion that Pauline could only talk about her kitten. 

The coffee was handed round when the company had 
ascended to tbe drawing-room, but Madame d'Hericourt 
p>referred having tea in a more cozy manner. The cloth 
was laid at nine o'clock by a neat-handed bright-looking 
French girl, — Madame d'Hericourt did not keep a footman. 
The tea was brought up ready-made, together with the hiss- 
ing urn, in order to replenish when necessary ; fruit, cake, 
and biscuits being also set on the table." 

" This reminds me," said Mr. Pierpgint " of our Cheshire 
fashion," — Mr. Pierpoint was a Cheshire man — "at least 
what was our fashion twenty years ago ; but who can say 
if it remains so in these days of change ? " 

" I did not learn the fashion in Cheshire, undoubtedly," 
replied the hostess ; " for I never was there. It is an 
idea of my own ; and I like it because it collects a party 
together." 



THE DIXXEK AT MADAME D HERICOURT's. 367 

"And a capital idea, too," said Sanders. "But what is 
this 1 " he exclaimed, as, on his way to take his place, he 
kicked a saucer on the carpet, and, looking down, perceived 
a small, square, white cloth on which it stood. '' It is well 
I did not put my big foot into it ! Who is going to have 
his or her meal in penitential fashion on the floor ? " 

*' That is the cat's table-cloth," said Pauline, laughing. 
" Tom loill pull his bread off his plate, and makes a 
mess." 

Anne cast an imploring look at her mother — " Don't 
you think Mama," she said, "that when people are here, 
this had best go away, and the cats be fed elsewhere? " 

"If you turn them out, Mama," interposed Pauline 
eagerly, " Tom will come and scratch so at the door. He 
has nearly torn all the cloth off the slips already." 

Madame d'Hericourt hesitated, and then compromised 
matters by desiring the said table-cloth to be removed 
further off. 

Anne, who would have felt a little impatience had she 
considered it decorous to indulge such a feeling, when it 
was a question of her mother's wishes stooped to pick up 
the saucers — for there were tw^o — while Pauline seized on 
the cloth. Eustace came to lend his assistance. " I hope 
there are attendants enough now on these two cats," said 
Anne. 

" I am glad to hear of my old friend Tom," observed 
Eustace. "Oh, there he is, I see. I feared that his nose 
had been put out of joint by the new favourite." 

''Titty is a dear," replied Pauline; "but my Tommy is as 
much a pet as ever, I can tell you." 

" Pauline's heart is capacious enough for a dozen cats," 
said her sister ; " and I should not wonder if we had not as 
many saucers by-and-by on the carpet." 

" What fun that would be ! " said Pauline. " But, Mr. 
Rochfort, it is all very fine, your taking Tom's part now ; 



368 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

you used not to like liim — indeed, I thought you quite 
disliked cats." 

" Pardon me, it was Tom Avho did not like me.'" 

" Because you took no pains to please him. No one likes 
anybody who does not try to be liked." 

"That is a very wise remark, my little woman ; we will 
all enter it in our pocket-books," said John Sanders ; and 
he pretended to write it down in his own. " ' No one is ever 
liked who does not take some pains to be liked.' — Have 
you got it down, Mr. E ochfort 1 " 

" It is not necessary," said Eustace ; " I shall remember 
it. But I really do not plead guilty to this indictment of 
enmity to cats. My landlady's cat comes and sits by the 
hour on my rug, and sometimes even opposite me on the 
table ; and, when I am deep in study of a big folio, it will 
put its paw on each leaf as I turn it over." 

"What is it like?" 

" It is a tiger, and very large. His name is Sam." 

" How I should like to see it ! " said Pauline. 

" I am sure I shall feel greatly honoured. Mademoiselle, 
if you will pay me a visit ; and so will Sam." 

" If you take to cats, you will get quite into Pauline's 
good graces," observed her sister. 

" We were always very good friends," said Pauline ; 
'•' were we not, Mr. Kochfort 1 " 

''Oh, yes! that we were," he rejoined, "and always 
shall be. We three have known each other too long not 
to be very good friends ; " and he glanced at Anne. 

" I am sure of that," she said, with much cordiality ; and 
then Eustace helped the cats to their milk, and thought he 
had succeeded in making himself foolish enough for one 
evening. 

The remark about tlie friendship had cost him a great 
effort, but, had he known all, he would have felt rewarded 
for it. Anne inwardly thought how conceited and imperti- 



THE DINNER AT MADAME d'hERICOURT's. 369 

nent she had been in suspecting this good friend of being 
in love with her. How could she have ever fancied that 
such was the case ! It was a wonderful relief to her now to 
think that it was all a mistake on her part ; and no young 
lady perha2:>s ever felt more pleased at a totally opposite 
discovery. Eustace gained much in consequence. Anne 
could like him to any extent as a friend, and she really 
thought she had never know^n him so pleasant or agreeable 
before ; in which last opinion she was not far wrong. 

" You must come and pay us a visit in Sicily, Mr. Roch- 
fort, when you make your autumn trip," said Sanders. " It 
will be just the vintage time, and we can show you some- 
thing of peasant life in a gay form. I have a vigna in the 
country, — a vineyard, I mean, for I make as well as sell 
wine. It is a merry scene, and we always close the vintage 
with some sports for our people." 

" I fear my time will be far too short for allowing myself 
that pleasure," replied Eustace. " It would be almost Hhere 
and back again.' I must content myself with a visit to 
Brittany, or somewhere near at hand." 

" A month would not be too much to give to Sicily," said 
Sanders. 

" And then," added P. Giglio, ^' there is our mountain 
to ascend ; your countrymen love climbing mountains. 
There are some Englishmen very good men, like my friend 
there, and some not so good, but they all ascend mountains 
— the good and the bad alike. How often have you been 
up our dear old unquiet neighbour, Mr. Sanders ? " 

" I could not say. I think I have gone up with pretty 
well every friend who has been so kind as to pay me a visit." 

" Talking of Englishmen who are not quite so good," 
resumed the Padre, " do you recollect a certain Capitano 
Baines who spent a winter at Palermo ? " 

" I should think I did remember him." 

" It was said that you chased him away. If so, I hold 
2b 



370 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

it for a good work ; but here lie is — in London. Do you 
know, I saw him the other day. I have seen him several 
times." 

" I should not wonder." 

" I was preaching from the altar-steps one day in the 
Warwick Street chapel, and, my eye happening for a moment 
to rest on the congregation, whom must I descry but the 
Capitano Baines ! He was in the second row of benches, 
leaning back like this " — and the Padre threw himself back 
in his chair — " what you English call lolling. Poor man, 
he was getting through the fastidio of my sermon as best 
he might for the sake of the music and singing ; and always, 
for I have seen him about three times, he had the same 
person with him ; a young man, too, who did not loll as 
much, but I fancy he was also a Protestant. I never saw 
him except with the Capitano, and always they were put 
there, in the second bench." 

"Those two seats are vacant just now," observed Mr. 
Pierpoint. " I know the couple, and alwaj^s regret when 
they come ; for they neither of them kneel, and one of them, 
that is he whom you call the Capitano, leans back in such a 
comfortable fashion for himself as to interfere much with 
the comfort of the man who does kneel behind him, which 
is your humble servant. I happen to know who the other 
is. He is not a Protestant, but, like his friend, comes 
merely for the music ; he is, in fact, hardly more than 
a Catholic in name ; which is perhaps not surprising, since 
his father is well known to be only a nominal Catholic. 
Were it otherwise, indeed, he would not have been likely 
to sit in Parliament as the representative of an English 
constituency. But Percy Wyndham is a great supporter of 
the present Ministry, and has a patron whose influence 
brings him in." 

An ominous pause followed this speech of Mr. Pierpoint's. 
Madame d'Hericourt did not know what to say ; she was 



THE DINNER AT MADAME d'h^IRICOURt's. 371 

'dtterly struck dumb ; and Eustace, of course, thought it 
right to hold his peace. Sanders broke the silence at last 
by very quietly saying, " Mr. Wyndham is my sister's 
husband ; he is a good and hospitable brother-in-law to me 
when we come in each other's way, and a worthy man, 
I doubt not ; but I fear that his religion sits very easy on 
him. So it did on his father before him ; and that is his 
best excuse. He was badly reared. As to the young man, 
my nephew, I know but little of him, for he does not live 
with his parents — I am staying at their house — so T only 
see him occasionally. However, it is but just for me to 
mention that I dined in company with him one Friday, 
and he abstained — so far, so good ; for more I cannot vouch." 

" I am really much distressed," said Mr. Pierpoint, " at 
having inadvertently alluded to relatives of yours, Mr. 
Sanders. I beg most sincerely to apologize." 

"There is nothing, my dear Sir," replied Sanders, "that 
needs apology, or about which you need trouble yourself for 
a moment. I am very sorry, not that what you have men- 
tioned should be said, but that there should be grounds for 
its being said. You have merely repeated what is, doubtless, 
generally known ; so there has been no offence against 
charity on your part. Think no more about it, my dear Sii\" 

And what did Anne think meanwhile ? No one looked 
at her except Pauline, who was quite in the dark as to 
Algernon's proposal or her sister's favourable sentiments 
regarding him. She tried to catch her eye, in which attempt, 
I need not say, she failed, but even the observant Pauline 
might, and indeed did, fail to detect traces of any deep 
emotion on her sister's face. Anne had great self-command ; 
there was a slight variation in her colour, it is true, and a 
look of pain passed over her countenance, but this was only 
natural. Madame d'Hericourt was pained also, and, to do 
her justice, her first feeling was sorrow for the thing itself, 
for before all things she was a Catholic, and had the interests 



o,2 Tin: w Y X d ii a m fa m i l v . 

of souls at heart. Ko doubt, her thoughts turned very 
quickly towai\is the probable eftect of this announcement 
on her daughter, an announcement which had hardly taken 
her by surprise, for, as the reader knows, she had always 
entertained misgivings respecting Algernon Wyndham's 
religious principles. 

Soon after, Padre Giglio rose to take leave ; Eustace did 
the same. " You are going early, Eustace," said ^ladame 
d'Hericourt. 

'• I viiiiit go, I fear ; for I have a good deal to do before 
I can take any rest. I should get through nothing if I did 
not set myself a daily task." Ami so he wished all a h.isty 
good night, and left along with the Italian priest. 

*' That young man is one among a thousand," said Mr. 
Pierpoint. " If he curtails his recreation hours for study, 
he can find time for works of mercy. Often do I meet him 
by the bedside of the sick and suflering. He is * feet to the 
lame and eyes to the blind,' as Job said ; and there is at this 
moment a blind old woman who likes to be read to, and 
whom he visits twice a week, often sitting a whole hour 
with her.' 

•'1 am not surprised," said ]\[me. d'Hericourt, "though 
1 knew nothing of all this." 

•' He is one who does not let his left hand know what his 
right hand does," added jNIr. Pierpoint. " Wotdd that we 
had many such ! He cares not for the commendation of 
man or Avoman." 

" Only think of ^Iv. Algernon Wyndliani being such a 
bad Catholic ! " said Pauline, when the two remaining 
guests had departed. '• AVe shall not be able to like him a.s 
well as we did." 

Anne thought so too, but held her peace till Pauline had 
gone to bed. Then, as she kissed her mother, she whispered 
these words in her ear : — " Mother, I give up INir. Wyndham 
from this hour, once and for ever." 



THE WVNDIIA5I FAMILY. 373 

CHAPTER XXXTI. 

Gertrude's weakness. 

Emma, as we have seen, had settled her line of policy. This 
line necessitated the suppression of all manifestation of her 
inward disturbance. There were only the mother and 
daughters at dinner ; Mr. Wyndham was at the House, 
which, although it was Wednesday, was sitting for the 
despatch of important business. No great effort was 
required to content Mrs. Wyndham in point of conversa- 
tion. She could talk a good deal herself, and was quite 
satisfied with a cheerful reply which kept the ball going. 
Emma exerted herself successfully to do thus much, and 
Gertrude was some, but not much, help. 

" So Mr. Devereux will come 1 " observed Mrs. Wyndham. 

" Yes, he will come, and he is a fair stop-gap," replied 
Emma. 

" A better one than 1 should be," said Gertrude. 

" And a man," added Emma ; " which papa prefers on 
this occasion. We shall be only three women, Mama, I 
think, altogether." 

" Only three. Mrs. Abinger could not come until later; 
she has a friend staying with her." 

" I am glad of it, for she is a dull, heavy piece of goods." 

*' However, we want her afterwards, for she makes up 
the whist party, and is a good player. Sir Philip likes well 
enough to have her for his partner, and is used t<^) her." 

" Lady Mordaunt is a painted old dowager," said Emma. 
" What a rum lot it is ! " 

•' Lady Mordaunt is Sir Philip's butt at cards, so comes 
in very well also," said Mrs. Wyndliam. 

" She makes more fun, at any rate, than Mrs. Abinger,'' 



374 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

remarked Emma ; " or, rather, she lends herself to be made 
fun of." 

"Which Sir Philip enjoys," added her mother. 

" What a horrid man he seems ! " exclaimed Gertrude. 

"Algernon would quite agree with you," said Emma. 
** He says Sir Philip likes only two things — something he 
can eat, and something he can trample on. His toady, 
Mr. Poole, must have some experience of the last. How- 
ever, he is not to be pitied, as he submits con amove to the 
process ; the amove, I suppose, being for the good things he 
gets at Sii' Philip's house, where he has the run of his 
teeth." 

" We have got the toady, too, so are complete," said her 
mother. " Your father likes having them, and that is enough. 
I wonder how John will get on with this sort of party. I 
fear he will be quite a fish out of water." 

The conversation continued in this edifying style during 
dinner ; then they went up to the drawing-room, and after 
a while Mrs. Wyndham began to nod, and finally dropped 
asleep in her chair. She was disturbed, after no long enjoy- 
ment of her doze, by the opening and shutting of the hall 
door. It was the master of the house returning ; he had a 
key and let himself in. His step on the stairs did not 
sound gay or elastic. 

" What o'clock is it ? " asked Mrs. Wyndham, rousing 
herself; "that's your father." 

" And very early, too," said Emma. 

Then Mr. Wyndham entered, and his wife saw at once, 
from his countenance, that he had something on his mind. 
She was not left long in suspense. 

" The Ministry," he said, " have been beaten by a majority 
of twenty to-night. It was a Cabinet question ; so they are 
sure to resign ; or, if they do not, they will dissolve Parlia- 
ment, and take the sense of the country. There will be a 
dissolution anyhow ; for a Liberal Ministry will not under- 



Gertrude's weakness. 375 

take to cany on the business of tlie nation with the 
present House, so we are in for a general election either 
way." 

''I thought, Percy, that you did not expect a dissolution 
yet?" 

" No, I did not ; I imagined, as did others, that we 
should be able to carry through this Session, which was so 
near its close ; and so we should but for this defeat on the 
India Bill. Our majorities, however, have been declining 
for some time, and it was the general persuasion that there 
would be a struggle when Parliament met again, which 
would necessitate either a resignation or an appeal to the 
country. It is a very serious matter for me that this crisis 
should have occurred some eight or nine months sooner than 
I anticipated, and that all the expense should have to be 
faced immediately." 

" Will it cost so much 1 You are sure to walk over the 
course at Whittlebury. The Duke of Plumpton's influence 
is so strong there." 

" I have little doubt but that it is strong enough to pidl 
me through, but there will be a contest this time. It is 
very awkward, and the Spanish bonds are going down 
besides. That pleasant piece of news greeted me this 
morning, and now there is this confounded dissolution 
hanging over me." 

Emma disliked this kind of conversation at all times ; it 
niffled her that things should not go prosperously. At this 
moment, however, all engrossed as she was with her own 
love affair, which was not likely, she supposed, to be affected 
in any way by these matters, she cared less about anything; 
but, as she was no longer needed, she was glad to escape to 
her room, with the excuse of fatigue. Gertrude did not 
remain very long after her, and left her father and mother 
still discussing the affairs of the State, and the state of their 
own affairs in connection with the same, which latter was, 



376 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

of course, felt to be by far the most interesting aspect of the 
question. 

Gertrude found her sister only partially undressed. She 
had put on her dressing-gown, and had thrown herself on 
her bed, where she lay sobbing. 

*' My darling," exclaimed Gertrude, stooping over her 
affectionately, " what is the matter ? Are you ill ] " 

" Not ill," replied Emma ; " only sick at heart ; indeed, I 
think I shall break my heart — that is all — but who will 
care?" And she sat up, pushing back with her hand the 
dishevelled hair which had fallen about her face. 

"You make me miserable, talking in that way, dearest," 
said her sister. " Shall not / care ? and don't I care very 
much, though I do not know what it is that grieves you 1 
Do tell me. Has it anything to say to what you hinted 
at the other night, when you told me Algernon had been 
unkind?" 

" He has been more than unkind ; he has been vmjust, 
cruel, Gertrude, and — to me who would have done anything 
for him ! He has taken away the character of the only man 
I love, or ever did love, or ever will love." 

" Do you mean Captain Baines ? " asked Gertrude. " I 
knew you liked him, but I had no idea you loved him." 

" I do love him, I tell you ; and he loves me devotedly, 
and I never will marry Sinj man but him ; I vow I will 
not ; no, not if he had all the riches of Crcesus. If Mama 
and Algernon think that, by putting me off him, they will 
get me to make some great match, they are completely mis- 
taken ; and they will find that it is not so easy to turn me 
from my purpose, or seduce my affections when I have once 
fixed them." 

" But, dearest, you would not wish to fix your affections 
on an unworthy object ; and, if you had unfortunately done 
so in ignorance, surely " 

*' But how do T know he is unworthy ? " cried Emma, 



Gertrude's weakness. 377 

passionately, interruptiDg her. *'I don't believe it. If 
Algernon knows anything to his disadvantage, why does he 
not state what it is 1 " 

" Because," replied Gertrude, " I i^resume it is no one 
definite thing to which he alludes ; he spoke to me also 
about Captain Baines, and expressed himself very strongly as 
to his having a bad character. I supposed he meant he had 
led, or was leading, an immoral life. All I can say, Emma, 
is that, had I been the one who entertained a preference 
for this gentleman, what Algernon said would have been 
quite enough to make me withdraw it." 

'* That is," said Emma, looking fixedly at her sister, 
" because you never loved. I doubt if you could love. To 
love a person with a true love is to believe in him." 

"But not against all reason, surely 1 " 

" Xot against all reason, certainly ; but love makes you 
discredit calumny, and strikes back its shafts like a shield. 
It indignantly repels all suspicion cast on the loved one, 
particularly when you have yourself grounds for suspecting 
those who would insinuate the suspicion, of a concealed 
motive." 

"But I do not think that either Algernon or Mama has 
any concealed motive. They might not like your marrying 
Captain Baines ; indeed, they would probably object greatly ; 
but I do not suppose they have an idea that you are think- 
ing of it. I am sure I had not any suspicion myself Still 
less, I am sure, are they manoeuvring with a view to any 
other match. I am persuaded that they simply regard him 
as disreputable, and therefore an undesirable acquaintance. 
Algernon said that he knew that he was so on the best 
authority." 

" Easy to say ; but what is his authority ? Why all this 
mystery? ISTow let us understand each other, Gertrude. 
You spoke of reflections on Captain Baines's moral cha- 
racter. Do not for a moment suppose that I make light of 



378 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

anytliing wrong or sinful. I clo not. But let us grant that 
it may be true that his life has not invariably been in 
accordance with strict morality; I would just ask one 
question — has Algernon's ? " 

'' I don't know," said Gertrude. 

''You don't know; nor do I. But would you pledge 
yourself that it has 1 As for me, I more than doubt it. He 
makes no assumption that it has ; and I should say, from 
the tone of his language about himself, that he by no means 
professes to have been a pattern of strictness and regularity : 
yet here are you, I, Mama, and all of us, thinking him good 
enough for Anne d'Hericourt, who is purity and perfection 
itself. Don't think I am so blind as not to see that Anne 
is a thousand times better than I am. I know that I am 
not fit to hold a candle to her. However faulty Captain 
Baines may be, there cannot be as much difference between 
him and me as between that angel and our brother. Per- 
haps — very likely — I am quite as faulty in my way as Cap- 
tain Baines in his, and should have been far worse had I 
possessed the unrestrained freedom of a man. Gertrude, we 
must make allowances for men ; a man is free to go his own 
way, and he often, when young, will fall into faults — great 
faults, I know — what we call sins — but his heart is not 
always, therefore, corrupt ; and so the time comes when he 
meets with one whom he really and truly loves, and this 
quite changes him and brings him back. Is such a one to 
be cast off, and by the very woman who has wrought this 
happy change? I say all this as putting things at the 
worst, and granting what as yet I am not bound to 
grant." 

" I suppose," said Gertrude, " there are degrees in bad- 
ness ; a ])erson may be habitually bad, or have bad principles, 
or he may have done something particularly discreditable. 
Algernon would not speak of Captain Baines in the way he 
does if he were no worse than himself or like the ordinary run 



Gertrude's weakness. 379 

of men in the world. Plainly there is something more, 
something which Algernon views as a disgrace." 

" Then let him say what it is," said Emma. " Yes, 
Gertrude," she added, and her face assumed a grave and 
earnest expression, " I will own there are acts which dis- 
grace a man, and would disgrace him at once in my eyes ; 
I mean dishonourable acts. If I loved a man better than 
all the world put together, better than any woman ever 
loved, and if I found that he had failed in true honour on 
any one single occasion, I would cast him away at once, 
and banish him from my heart. It is truth, what I say ; 
I assure you solemnly that it is so. But Captain Baines is 
the soul of honour," she added proudly, adopting, uncon- 
sciously, the words which Jardine had used ; "nor has any 
one that I know of dared to impugn his honour as a gen- 
tleman. If any one did so, I should of course insist on 
proofs ; still I would yield to convincing proof. To vague 
accusations, I will not so much as hearken." 

" But then," said Gertrude, making no reply to Emma's 
confident assertions of her lover's sense of honoiu% " there 
is the religion, if there was nothing else." 

" Yes, I know that is an objection. But what are we to 
do? Almost all our friends and acquaintances are Pro- 
testants. How is it possible for us to determine never to 
like or to marry any one but a Catholic ? Captain Baines 
Ls not at all bigoted, however, I can assure you, and would 
never interfere with my religion." 

" And what do you mean to do ? " asked her sister sor- 
rowfully. 

" Why ask me % " said Emma ; " you cannot sympathize 
with me or understand me. Perhaps I have been foolish 
to tell you all this, but you took me by surprise. Perhaps 
even you will beti-ay me," she added, with some bitter- 
ness. 

" Betray you ! " exclaimed Gertrude ; " when did I de- 



380 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

serve that you should speak those unkind words, Emma 1 
There is no one, you know, that I love as I do you." 

"My dearest Gertrude, I do not suspect you," said Emma 
fondly. " I know you love me, and would always be true 
to me." And then the two sisters wept awhile, clasped in 
each other's arms ; after which they eacli prepared in 
silence to go to bed, and thus ended this unsatisfactory 
conversation. 

The next morning Algernon came at about half-past 
eleven o'clock to report to his mother what had passed 
between him and his sister, but he found that she was 
already out, having gone with her two girls in the carriage 
to Cadogan Place, where she was to deposit Emma. 
Sanders was in the drawing-room. " Ah ! that is you, 
Algernon," he said as his nephew entered. '' There is 
something I want to tell you ; " and then, without further 
preface, he related what had been said at Madame d'Heri- 
court's table in his hearing the previous day. " I know 
very little, my good nei^hew, about your religious observ- 
ances, you see ; all I could say, I did say ; which was that 
I dined in company with you one Friday, and that you 
abstained. For more than that I could not vouch." 

" It was very kind of you to take my part so far," said 
Algernon. 

*' Not kind at all," replied his uncle ; " it was the simple 
truth. Hearing you called a nominal Catholic, or pretty 
nearly so, it was only just to record my evidence, so far as 
I could give it ; it might go for Avliat it was worth, and I 
was bound to give it." 

" All the same," replied his nephew, " call it kindness, 
or call it justice, I owe you thanks." 

" I should not," continued Uncle John, " have thought of 
repeating this — for there is no call to let people know 
all the disagreeable things that are said about them — but 
your mother told me, as a secret, that you had an eye to 



Gertrude's weakxess. 381 

tliat young lady there, as yonr wife ; and I suspect what 
was said will not help your prospects. Now as for me, I 
don't want either to make or mar the match, for whether 
or no you two would suit I cannot say." 

" She would suit me well, I know," said Algernon ; 
'^ and, if she should accept me — I ought rather to say, be 
allowed to accept me — I shall endeavour to make her 
happy. She is better than I am ; I know that. I should 
not like ber as well if she was not." 

*' It is honest of you to say so. Well, as T was going to 
observ^e, it is no business of mine to interfere either way 
whatever I may think ; but it seemed only fair by you 
that you should be made aware how matters stood. If you 
believe you can explain that you are all right about your 
religion, you may prefer going to have it all out at once ; 
and, if so, you are quite free to say that I repeated to you 
what I had heard." 

Algernon reflected a moment, and then said, "I do 
not think I shall go. I should only see Madame d'Heri- 
court. She will not let me see Anne, and, above all, not 
by herself. Left to ourselves, I feel confident we could 
come to an agreement ; but Anne is completely under her 
mother's influence, and her mother does not favour my suit. 
She is suspicious of me, and besides, she has, I feel certain, 
other views. Those French parents are so used to making 
their children's marriages for them, that they cannot recon- 
cile themselves to the idea of free choice or spontaneous 
preference on the part of those most concerned. It is not 
selon les regies.'" 

'' I think you wrong her there," said Sanders. '' So far as 
T can judge, Madame d'Hericourt is not at all set upon 
marrying her daughter ; but, of course, the opinion of so 
new an acquaintance as I am is not worth much." 

*'I don't accuse Madame d'Hericourt of exercising any 
constraint on Anne's inclinations," replied Algernon ; "but 



382 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

Anne, no doubt, knows very well what her mother wishes, 
or does not wish, and this knowledge weighs upon her with 
a force which I have no power so much as to counter- 
balance, for the prudent mother will not let us meet. So 
there is little use in my going to the house to seek an inter- 
view. It would do no good, and would only be a bother. 
Besides, Qui s' excuse, s' accuse. I will let things take their 
chance ; and my chance is a poor one, I fear. Thank you, 
at any rate, for preparing me ; " and Algernon walked to 
the window, like one who considered that the topic was 
exliausted. 

So it was ; John Sanders had said what he considered it 
his duty to say, and did not desire to prolong the conversa- 
tion. Presently he took his hat and went out. 

Algernon was left to his own reflections, which were not 
pleasant. " I knew that rascal would be the ruin of me," 
he said to himself. '* I would call him out, if he were not 
such a vulgar knave." But now, should he tell his mother ? 
He would meet with plenty of sympathy and pity from her, 
but it is not all sympathy that soothes, and Algernon did 
not relish pity much ; so he made up his mind that his 
mother's sympathy would minister no consolation to him, 
and that her pity would worry him. Had he and Emma 
been good friends, she would have been the confidante of 
his distresses, but this was out of the question now. 

Mrs. Wyndham and Gertrude returned very soon, and, 
when the latter had gone up-stairs to take off her bonnet 
and shawl, Algernon gave his mother an account of his 
conversation with Emma during the ride home. " I could 
make nothing of her, in short," he said, " and get nothing 
out of her. No one can do anything with Emma," 

" Do you really think she likes that man, Algernon ? " 
inquired the anxious mother. " Do you believe, I mean, 
that she has any serious thoughts of him 1 Her obstinacy 
looks like it, and quite alarms me." 



Gertrude's weakness. 383 

" Who can guess ? I questioned Gertrude yesterday to 
see if she knew or would tell me anytliing." 

'" And what did she say ? " 

*' She said that Emma seemed to like Captain Baines 
the best of all her partners, but she did not know how 
much she liked him." 

"She probab]y does not know," answered Mrs. "Wyndliam. 
" I do not fancy that Emma tells Gertrude all that passes 
through her mind. I doubt whether, if she loved that 
wretched man, she would confess as much to her sister." 

" Perhaps not in so many words, but sisters generally 
know each other so well that they do not need telling ; 
and besides, most sisters do tell each other all their secrets 
de cceur," 

" Emma, I think," said Mrs. Wyndham, " confides in 
me quite as much, or more than in her sister. I have 
always encouraged her confidence." 

" Don't be too sure of that, mother. Sisters tell each 
other some sort of things more readily than they will tell 
their mothers. Gertrude, depend upon it, knows more 
than you do ; but it does not follow that she will own to 
her knowledge. I asked her, however, straightforward 
whether she thought Emma was in love with Baines, and 
she certainly said, not^that she knew of, — but she looked 
annoyed at being questioned. If you think you might get 
an}i;hing more out of her, you could try your hand. Cer- 
tainly, if Emma is such an ass as to be in love with that 
fellow, we must take some further step for her disenchant- 
ment. She says, you know, that she would listen to 
reason," 

" You mean that we had best let her know the whole 
truth, without waiting for my brother John's departure." 

" Yes, I think so ; particularly as Baines is hanging 
about, and that Jardine is making himself so intimate. 
When does my uncle go ? " 



384 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

"Next Thursday." 

" It would certainly be desirable to avoid this blow-up 
while he is here. My uncle is really a very good, friendly 
sort of man, and ought to be spared disagreeables." 

" Yes, indeed he is," said Mrs. Wyndham. " Another 
reason/' she continued, " for saying nothing more to Emma 
at present, is in order not to put her out further till the 
party is over. I depend upon her so much for management 
and arrangement, and, if she should turn sulky, the whole 
thing would prove a failure. With all my heart do I wish 
the invitations had never been sent out. The season will 
be brought to a premature close if Parliament should be 
dissolved, and all this expense, which just now it would 
have been such an object to avoid, will be entirely thrown 
away ; but it cannot be helped now." 

" I suspect matters will be patched wp for a while," said 
Algernon, "and that Parliament will not be dissolved 
just yet. A few necessary Bills will be hurriedly passed, 
and then there will be the prorogation." 

" Whether or no, your father and I liaA'e settled that 
I shall go out of town with the girls as soon as your uncle 
leaves. We are parting with two of the servants, so it will 
be convenient on all accounts, and we need not replace 
them till the winter, if we do not return. This will be a 
saving. I am writing to offer myself for a week or ten 
days to Lady Ellerton, to whom I am always welcome, and 
there I shall await events. If Parliament should be dis- 
solved, the girls and I shall move on to the sea-side at once, 
and not return to London at all. But I keep all this to 
myself until the party is over, for the same reason that 
makes me wish to avoid other annoyances — I mean on 
Emma's account." 

" This is a sweeping measure, indeed," said her son- 
" PerhajDS, however, as respects Emma it will not be a bad 
move. It will break through the whole affair of Baines in 



Gertrude's weakness. 385 

the best way possible, for it will seem the natural result of 
other circumstances." 

" So I think," said his mother ; " it will disappoint very 
much, but cannot ii'ritate." 

" Ten days of Gorsham and Lady Ellerton will be a 
terrible price, however, to pay. Do you think, mother, 
you can get through those ten days — with London, besides, 
still in the full fling of gaiety, and Emma as cross as tw^o 
sticks — without being extinguished ? " 

" I can get through anything, if necessary," said Mrs. 
Wyndham ; " and >ow I will go up to Gertrude " — the 
mother and son had descended to the dining-room in order 
to avoid interruption. 

Algernon then left the house, and Mrs. Wyndham 
returned to the drawing-room. Gertrude was reading, but 
soon laid aside her book, to which her mother's desultory 
observations, dropping in every minute or so, prevented 
her from attending, and took up her crochet work. Mrs. 
Wyndham's random remarks were only meant as prefaces 
to the main subject which she wished to introduce without 
any alarming formality. At last she broke ground thus : 
" Algernon told you yesterday what a bad character we 
hear of Captain Baines. It is very annoying that w^e 
should have got so intimate with him." 

" Yes, very." 

" And that Emma should have flirted with him as she 
has. Do you think, Gertrude, that she really likes him 
very much ? " 

" 0, yes, she likes him very much ; you can see that, 
Mama," replied Gertrude. "Algernon asked me the same 
question yesterday, and I told him all I knew." It will be 
remembered that Gertrude now knew a great deal more, but 
she had no mind to confess what she knew, so endeavoured 
to evade the subject without being guilty of a direct 
untruth. 

2c 



^^^ THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

"How I wish I knew if she really loves that man !" 
said her mother. " I should have thought that you, Ger- 
trude, must have had such good opportunities of observing 
her, that you might make a probable guess at her senti- 
ments. It is really desirable to know. If it is a mere 
passing liking it will wear off, and I should be sorry to 
annoy her by speaking to her on the subject ; but, if there 
is anything deeper, then I must have a serious talk with 
her. Of course, I should be most kind and gentle, and 
should not name you." 

Thus appealed to, what was Gertrude to dol Truth, 
respect for her mother, who was entitled to an answer on 
such a point, and even well-considered kindness to her sister 
seemed to demand a candid avowal that she had reason to 
fear that her sister not only liked but loved this man. She 
could have said thus much without repeating anything Emma 
had said, and without any reference to the passionate declara- 
tions of her determination to marry him ; but then those 
words of Emma's — "Perhaps you will betray me," — still rang 
in her ears ; and her own energetic repudiation of the idea, 
and the tears she and her sister had shed in each other's arms, 
which were to her as the seal of a promised secresy, rushed 
upon her recollection, and seemed to impose silence on her. 
She took refuge therefore in an evasion. " I told Algernon 
yesterday all that I knew," she repeated. She thought she 
saved truth thereby, but she knowingly allowed a false 
impression to remain on the mind of one who was entitled 
to an explicit answer. 

But Gertrude had a false conscience on the subject of her 
duty respectively towards her sister and her mother. She 
had a sort of clannish feeling of honour with regard to all 
that her sister might say to her, while she had very misty 
views as to the lawful authority of parents, although her 
natural good- feeling and regard for her duty taught her to 
pay respect to them. Mrs. Wyndham's faulty system of 



A DISMISSAL AND A PROPOSAL. 387 

education was to blame for this in a great measure. Ger- 
trude had, however, herself a defect, for which she alone was 
responsible. She was weak, weak of purpose, weak in resist- 
ing the influence of one who had a stronger will than her 
own, of whom she made a kind of idol, even while conscious 
of the idol's great faults, and whose frown, displeasure, or 
contempt she came practically to dread more than a dere- 
liction of duty — in plain words, more than an offence 
against God's laws. And so Gertrude equivocated, and did 
not feel as if it was possible for her to do otherwise. Bat 
it was a fatal error. Had she said, as she ought, that she 
feared that the impression made upon her sister was 
deeper than a mere liking, then the whole truth would 
have been at once made known to Emma, and it would 
have saved her. She was quite sincere when she told 
Gertrude how deeply repulsive to her was a dishonour- 
able act ; and had she known that her lover was charged 
with such a disgraceful offence as cheating at cards, she 
would never have rested till she had sifted the matter to 
the bottom. But Gertrude did not say what she ought to 
have said, and what she did say served to lull her mother 
into a state of false security. The matter, Mrs. Wyndham 
now thought, might safely stand over a few days. When 
they had left London, then Emma should know all. 



CHAPTER XXXIII. 

A DISMISSAL AND A PROPOSAL. 

Anne was contented that her mother should at once write to 

Algernon and break off the affair, but Madame d'Heiicourt 

thought that it was kinder, and, above all, more just, to 

2c 2 



388 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

see tlie young man and acquaint liini with what they had 
heard, and with Anne's consequent resolution. Although 
there was no probability that he could give any satisfactory 
account of his religious principles, and, still less, of his 
attention to his religious duties, yet, as the accusation had 
been made behind his back, it seemed fair to allow him the 
opportunity of speaking for himself, if only to prevent his 
thinking that he was hardly dealt with. So Madame 
d'Hoiicourt wrote him a note asking him to call on the 
following morning, but without alluding to the purport of 
the appointment. Algernon, however, knew well what he 
was to expect. " I have been judged and found guilty," 
he said to himself ; " and now I am to be asked, like the 
criminal at the bar, what I have to allege why sentence 
should not be pronounced upon me. I do not know that T 
have anything to allege — nothings certainly, which will 
satisfy my severe judge. It is a mere form ; but I suppose 
it must be gone through. It is no use going, but I must 
go, of course." And he did ojo. 

He was shown into Madame d'Horicourt's private sitting- 
room, where he found her ready to receive him, which she 
did with lior accustomed kindness, tempered with a shade 
of gravity. She entered immediately on the object of the 
interview. She told him how they had heard, from the lips 
of one who was quite unaware that they were mutually 
acquainted, an account of him which had at once decided 
her daughter to put an end to all expectations of a future 
union between them. " No engagement subsisted, I know," 
continued Madame d'Hericourt, " and, in one sense, you 
were both perfectly free ; yet, so long as my daughter's sen- 
timents and yours remained unchanged, a species of tacit 
connection was maintained which must now be severed. 
Anne has often told me that jio consideration whatsoever, 
no preference, however strong, would ever induce her to be 
united to one who did not strictly fulfil his religious duties; 



A DISMISSAL AND A PROPOSAL. 389 

and she wished me to write at once and say so. She said 
this before I had made the slightest comment on what we 
had heard ; so that you may rely upon it that my influence 
had no share in prompting her decision. It was I who 
thought it better and only fair by you, since the statement 
was made in your absence, to see you and give you an 
opportunity of justifying yourself, if able to do so, from the 
charge ; and in this proposal she acquiesced. I fear, how- 
ever, from the confidence with which it was made, and the 
reference to notoriety, that it is only too well founded." 

Then Madame d'Hericourt paused. It was as Algernon 
had expected — the criminal was called on to allege cause, if 
he could, why judgment should not be executed upon him. 
He knew well that he had nothing to say for himself. 
Had he been inclined to tell a downright lie, it could hardly 
have been successful, but, to do Algernon justice, he was 
not a liar. True, he, as well as his sister Emma, who 
resembled him in this respect, might not seldom be guilty 
of artifice, and tell small untruths, but they both of them 
shrank from a formal lie in any serious matter. Still he 
would not die without a struggle. If he could not say 
much for his past life, he could make promises as regarded 
the future. " No one," he replied, " can be better per- 
suaded than am I myself that I am unworthy of your 
daughter ; but who is worthy of her 1 I will say this 
much for myself, however, that not only do I love and 
admire her — that, indeed, were little — but I think T appre- 
ciate her excellence thoroughly. T love her and value her 
for those very qualities and virtues in which slie is so im- 
mensely my superior. Is this nothing 1 Surely it is at least 
a pledge that I shall endeavour so to conduct myself in 
every way as to give her no cause to regret having joined 
her lot with mine. Not only should I ofier no obstacle to 
her religious observances, buo she would attract me to a 
better fulfilment of my own obligations than at present I 



390 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

can boast of. Slie would he as a guiding-star to my 
life." 

" These are hut promises and hopes," rejoined Madame 
d'Hericourt. " I do not question your sincerity in making 
the one or in expressing the other, but it is so easy to deceive 
yourself. Many have done so before. My daughter would 
not and could not trust to a promise. She regards what 
you now are. Husband and wife ought to be walking hand 
in hand along the same path ; together they ought to be 
able to kneel at God's altar; their hopes, their desires, 
their aims ought to be one. She does not doubt, nor do I, 
that you would be kind ; she does not doubt but that you 
would desire to make her happy ; but all this would not 
satisfy her unless your first and supreme object was to love 
and serve God." 

" I think," said Algernon, " evading the direct point, 
" that you hardly make due allowances for me. Remember 
how your daughter has been brought up ; with what tender, 
fostering care every good disposition has been cultivated 
and all evil external influences have been sedulously ex- 
cluded. Contrast this with my education. Brought up in 
a Protestant school, then launched upon the world prac- 
tically my own master, free to choose my friends and my 
mode of life — I own that all this has told unfavourably 
upon me, and it has led to a neglect of my duties as a 
Catholic ; but is no excuse to be made for me? I see it all 
now, and have seen it ever since I became acquainted with 
your angelic daughter." 

" I assure you, I do make a thousand excuses for you, 
Mr. Wyndham, but you must yourself see that this is not 
the point. The question is whether, such as you are and as 
circumstances may have made you, you are one with whom 
my daughter would think it safe or prudent to connect her- 
self by the most solemn of ties ! Granting all you say, and 
that your admiration and love for her have led you to better 



A DISMISSAL AXD A PROPOSAL 391 

thonglits — what Las liitlierto been the result 1 God makes 
use, I know, of many and various means to recall us to 
Himself — even of our human affections, but this is only the 
bait, as it were, to allure us ; we must return to Him for 
His own sake, or it is no real return. Excuse me, Mr. 
Wyndbam, for questioning you so closely, but here is the 
precise point, so I must be plain. If you have only re- 
solved to effect this return when, and if, you should be 
married to my daughter, then, I must say — and she, I 
know, would also say — that such a resolution carries its 
own condemnation on the face of it. If you had been 
really awakened to a sense of your soul's interests, you 
would have placed those interests in safety at once, and 
quite irrespectively of the accomplishment of some temporal 
object." 

"I certainly should take the step to which you aUude 
preparatory to my marriage," said Algernon, " and not 
merely as its consequence." 

" But you have not done so yet, if I rightly understand 
you, nor are you, as it appears, preparing to do so." 

Algernon was silent for a moment, and then said, " Not 
further as yet than I have stated. Such matters require 
time and reflection." 

Madame d'Hericourt now rose from her chair. " Dear 
Mr. Wyndham," she said, " there is no use in our prolong- 
ing this distressing conversation. You do not substantially 
deny what we have heard of you, and all you can say is 
that a favourable religious impression has been made upon 
you by my daughter, which you doubt not would be deep- 
ened were you united ; but this is not sufficient. I need 
not say that it is not sufficient to satisfy me, for, were I 
satisfied, Anne, I know, would not be so ; with every 
sincere wish, then, for your happiness, we must part." 

" Must it be so 1 " said Algernon with a sigh ; " and I 
cannot see her to plead my own cause ? " 



392 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

" No, Mr. Wyndham ; the interview would only distress 
her, and she has, I assure you, quite made up her mind. 
You may also take my solemn word for it — she is, and has 
been, a free agent throughout. I have brought no influence 
to bear upon her at any time, and beyond the delay, in 
which she readily acquiesced, and the condition of not 
meeting while matters w^ere in abeyance, of which I am 
convinced she saw the propriety, I have never in any way 
interfered." 

*' I am quite sure you have only done what you thought 
right," replied A]gernon, " and I am very far from suspect- 
ing you of exercising any constraint upon your daughter ; 
but excuse me if I cannot bring myself to believe that your 
influence has not counted for much. There is an influence 
which acts silently. Perhaps I have no reason to complain 
of a mother's possessing and using influence of this kind. 
It is but natural. It has been my fault and mistake to 
choose too well ; to love what was above me. And now, 
in bitterness of heart, I must turn away from the bright 
vision which has been smiling upon me, and which seemed 
to make another man of me. You may have acted best 
for your daughter, Madame d'Hericourt, in rejecting me, 
but, believe me, you have acted the worst for me. You 
are throwing me back on the world and on a profitless, 
aimless life ; you are heading me back from the upward 
path " 

*' I cannot allow you to speak in this way, Mr. Wynd- 
ham," said Madame d'Hericourt, interrupting him. " In 
the first place, I must repeat that it is not I who have, 
what you call, rejected you. I must protest against your 
throwing the responsibility of your future life, and the very 
salvation of your soul, as you seem to imply, either on 
myself or on Anne. It is altogether a delusion to attribute 
to others the blame of actions or courses of action which 
depend entirely on our own free will," Then, softening 



A DISMISSAL AND A PROPOSAL. 393 

her tone, she added, " Mj dear young friend — I must still 
call you by that name, for my feelings towards you are 
most friendly — believe me, that which regard for our own 
eternal interests and the grace of God cannot move us to 
do, neither can the love of any woman, however deep may 
be that love and however perfect its object. Seek the 
kingdom of God, dear Mr. Wyndham, and other things 
shall be added ; but do not aim at anything as the condition 
of seeking the kingdom of God. This is to set God below 
the creature. He is not to be had at that price." 

Had Algernon, when he had sought and won the affec- 
tions of Anne d'Hericourt, immediately set the affairs of 
his conscience in order, and begun a new life — could he 
have pleaded such a course on his part as the pledge of his 
sincerity — I think his chance even at this hour would not 
have been quite lost ; hopes for the future might still have 
been not inexorably excluded ; but he had done nothing of 
the sort. His reform had gone no further than a little 
superficial respect to some of the Church's precepts. He 
had abstained on Fridays, as we have seen, and attended 
Mass more frequently on days of obligation — that was all. 
Anything beyond was so closely bound up in his mind 
with the event of his marriage, and regarded so entirely 
contingent thereon, that he never so much as entertained 
the notion separately. Indeed, the very idea of what 
would be incumbent upon him as the husband of Anne 
was extremely vague and indefinite. It might be summed 
up in the desire to satisfy her, and in a certain attraction 
to better things, with which love for a beautiful and 
virtuous object will inspire the most worldly for a season. 
Madame d'Hericourt had sufl&cient penetration to discern 
this attitude of the young man's mind, and so she wisely 
left no door open to hope even in the event of his proving 
at any future time more worthy of her daughter's accept- 
ance. Accordingly, to his final question, " Then there is 



394 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

no hope for me, either present or future ? " she replied, " I 
cannot hold you out the slightest. Everything must be 
considered as at an end." She held out her hand to bid 
him farewell. Algernon took and pressed it, and, departing 
without another word, left the house never to set foot in it 
again. 

He was sad, very sad, but the disappointment had been 
less poignant because he had been prepared for it ; indeed, 
from the hour that Madame d'Hericourt had seen him after 
his proposal and insisted on a period of probation, his hopes 
had been far from sanguine, and every day he had felt them 
decline. It was, therefore, the less difficult for him to 
conceal his sorrow from his mother's observation, particularly 
as she was at present too much engrossed with her own 
troubles. He was, at any rate, fully resolved not to mention 
the subject to her. There was another reason which made 
it easier for Algernon to conceal a disappointment than it 
would be for many — he never nursed his griefs. He 
loved himself and his own ease and comfort too much for 
any such unremunerative employment. Anne d'Hericourt 
had been a beautiful vision. The vision was withdrawn, 
and the pang was sharp ; but, after some brief regrets, 
Algernon will set his mind to forget her. Emma had 
gauged him truly. 

Leaving the young man to his meditations, as he takes 
his way at a lounging pace to his office, where he meant to 
bestow his ennui and painful distractions for the next two 
or three hours, we return to Berkeley Square. Mrs. Koper, 
it will be remembered, was suffering from remorse. Mrs. 
Roper was really not a bad woman, though she had done a 
very bad thing. She had, perhaps, never done so bad a 
thing before in her life. Jealousy and disappointment had 
urged her on, but no sooner had the act been perpetrated 
than she began to feel truly uncomfortable ; and, when she 
ascertained that it had accomplished the object which had 



A DISMISSAL AXD A PROPOSAL, 395 

been her indncement for doing it, she was miserable beyond 
expression. Every one in the house knew by this time 
that Tyrell had received notice to leave, and that the cause 
was something connected with her refusal to go to the play. 
This could not well be concealed, as it was evident that she 
was sent away in displeasure. Had she received the usual 
month's warning, Tyrell would have been able to withhold 
the reason; but, as it was, all jumped to the conclusion 
that she was parted with on that account, and, without 
telling an untruth, she could not deny that this was true 
in the main, although she refrained from satisfying the 
curiosity of any one by detailing particulars. Her mistress, 
doubtless, wished for a different sort of person, she said, 
one who would not inconvenience her in things of this 
nature ; and she had a perfect right to make a change if 
she pleased. 

" But not to send you off in that fashion, as if you had 
disgraced yourself," said Mr. Bowles. 

" If I do not complain, Mr. Bowles," replied Tyrell, " no 
one need find any fault on my account." 

" But you never do complain." 

To Boper Mrs. Tyrell was gracious and kind in her 
manner as usual, but Mrs. Boper knew that this behaviour 
on her part proved nothing. She wondered whether her 
mistress had quoted her ; anyhow, she feared that Tyrell 
must be aware that she was the calumniator ; for no one 
possessed Mrs. Wyndham's ear except the lady's maid. To 
be sure, there was Bachel, who was a spiteful one, and had 
a grievance under which she was smarting, and Bachel was 
supposed to carry a good deal of gossip to her young 
mistress. But then, Bachel's evidence, unsupported by her 
own, would hardly be deemed sufficient. Conscience also 
makes cowards of us, and Boper was convinced that Tyrell 
must know the truth. So wretched had the poor woman 
become, that she would willingly have given away Mr. 



396 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

Bowles to any one who would take him, if only she could 
have rid herself of the burden of this cruel lie. But what 
could she do ? Unsay what she had said 1 That would 
have been to shame and disgrace herself in her lady's eyes. 
She would try to qualify her statement, however, and eat 
up as much of it as she could manage without stultifying 
herself entirely. " I hope, ma'am," she said to her mistress, 
while engaged in dressing her for the evening, " that you 
did not name me to Mrs. Tyrell. I should be very sorry 
she took anything unkind ; and, indeed, I did not mean 
anything unkind, I am sure ; " and Mrs. Boper could not 
restrain a faint sob. 

" What's the matter now 1 " asked Mrs. Wyndham, 
looking round sharply. 

"Well, ma'am, I was afraid, when I heard you had 
given Mrs. Tyrell notice, that I had — that I had not made 
myself clear." 

" You made yourself very clear. You said that Tyrell 
was impertinent enough to censure my conduct, and to say 
that God would judge me for going to the play." 

" Mrs. Tyrell certainly spoke out very severe about the 
theater, even when I reminded her that you, ma'am., went 
there," replied Boper ; " but then, she is a very strange 
person about them sort of things. Of course, it aggravated 
me to hear her talk so, but, when I came to think of it 
afterwards, I was half afraid I might have took the thing 
up too strong like. Mrs. Tyrell, I believe, did not so much 
mean to blame you, ma'am, as to assert herself and her 
princi[)les. She thinks a deal about her principles." 

" But she said I should have to give an account to God." 

*' Yes, she said we should all have to, and included you, 
ma'am, of course, because we was talking of you." 

^' Well, I don't think I misunderstood you, or that you 
misjudged her, Boper, for she does not deny the charge 
herself. I never mentioned you, but I told her what I had 



A DISMISSAL AND A PROPOSAL. 397 

heard, and said I could not put up with such language. 
She may think Bowles repeated it." 

*' Law, ma'am ! she'd never think Mr. Bowles told of her." 

*' Or Kachel ; but what does it matter? I am sure you 
need not distress yourself, Boper, for I should have probably 
parted with her when we left London, which may be very 
early this season if Parliament should be dissolved. Mr. 
Wyndham wishes for a superior sort of cook." 

If there was some consolation for Boper in these last 
words, there was also what was calculated to cause grievous 
disappointment. If the family were going out of town so 
soon, she would have no time to bring her batteries to 
bear on Mr. Bowles's heart after her rival was gone. She 
must accompany her mistress ; the butler would remain on 
board wages in the London house. But the poor woman 
was too sincerely unhappy to feel this blow as she other- 
wise would have felt it. All that flashed upon her mind 
was the fact that she had burdened her conscience with a 
sin for nothing, and without any prospect of reaping the 
advantage it was to have produced for her. So she went 
up to her room to have a good cry. 

Meanwhile Mr. Bowles's mind was as much occupied as 
was Boper's, but in a very different way. He had nothing 
on his conscience in the affair, poor man, though it distressed 
him greatly. Mrs. Tyrell was going ; going in a week : he 
had no time to lose. He was sitting in the arm-chair by 
the kitchen fire, which he now so frequently occupied. His 
fat hands were joined over his chest, and now and then he 
performed with them the evolution customary to one who 
is in the act of soaping and washing them ; or he occasion- 
ally twirled the two thumbs round each other. He was not 
aware that he performed either of these manual evolutions, 
but, with him, they were significant of a disturbance of mind. 

Mrs. Tyrell was engaged about the grate with some 
culinary arrangements. " I suppose," she said, " we may 



398 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

expect M. Pattin to look in very soon, in order to give 
his preliminary directions, and to see what will be wanted." 

" Hang that fellow ! " said Mr. Bowles, with a burst of 
energy rather unusual to him, 

" Mr. Bowles ! " ejaculated Tyrell in a voice half of sur- 
prise, half of remonstrance. 

" I beg your pardon, Mrs. Tyrell, I am forgetting my 
manners ; but, really, I am so sadly cut up about all this, 
that I cannot command myself. One thing I am resolved 
upon — / will not stay on here." 

" Pray, Mr. Bowles, do nothing hasty. It would be such 
a pity. It would put the family out very much indeed 
were you to leave in this sudden way." 

" Hang the family ! " 

" Why you are hanging every one this morning," replied 
Tyrell, who could not help smiling at this curious exhibi- 
tion of wrath on the part of the usually placid butler. 

" It will out — I am almost inclined to hang myself." 

" I hope that is only a figure of speech, Mr. Bowles." 

" Well, the hanging is ; so I must confess. I shall not 
literally hang myself, but I feel somehow as if there was 
nothing worth living for just now ; certainly there will be 
nothing worth living for here this day week ; so I am 
going to give warning — that's all." 

" Are you wise in doing that T' asked Tyrell. *' This is 
not an uncomfortable place for you, I should think j and 
you hardly know what another situation might prove. Pray 
do not be hasty. I am much obliged to you, I am sure, 
for your kind interest about me, but am truly sorry that 
you should take the matter to heart in this way. I com- 
plain of no injustice myself, and, indeed, I do not think 
that I ever thoroughly suited either Mr. or Mrs. Wynd- 
ham. You do." 

"Then they may suit themselves with a new butler, — 
that is all I have to say, Mrs. Tyrell. There's no use 



A DISMISSAL AND A PROPOSAL. 399 

talking ; I have made up my mind — quite made up my mind. 
I do take the matter to heart, that is exactly it " ; and the 
thumbs twirled more rapidly than ever. " I mean to leave, 
and I have no thoughts of seeking another situation. I 
am going to give up servdce altogether. 1 am well able. 
T have got the means." And then Mr. Bowles proceeded 
to explain how he had a pension from his last place, and a 
good sum in the Savings Bank. He was, besides, possessor 
of a small house at Tunbridge Wells, with a shop front. 
It had been his father's, who had exercised some trade. 
What the trade was Mr. Bowles did not specify, but his 
parent had not got rich upon it ; on the contrary, he had 
got into debt, and had parted with the house on lease for 
£30 a year. On this his father had lived for the rest of his 
days, helped by what his son could spare him out of his 
wages. " Since my father's death, I have saved a consider- 
able sum," continued Mr. Bowles, "enough to set me up, 
as I intend, in the stationery line. The lease falls in next 
spring ; I shall then occupy the premises myself, and get a 
quiet lodger for the drawing-room floor. I expect to do very 
well. Tunbridge Wells is a very nice place. Do you know 
Tunbridge Wells \ " 

Mrs. Tyrell did not know Tunbridge Wells, but had 
heard it praised, and she congratulated jNIr. Bowles very 
cordially on his comfortable prospects. 

" Yes, my prospects are comfortable," said Mr. Bowles, 
" but there is one thing to be said : I shall feel lonely, or 
should feel lonely, by myself. I shall want a companion, some 
one who can keep my house for me, with whom I can sit 
down to a snug dinner. I should be as dull as an owl in a 
hollow tree all by myself. Man was not made to live alone, 
Mrs. Tyrell." 

Then Mrs. Tyrell asked if he had a sister or other near 
relative. 

No, he had not. " To be plain, Mrs. Tyrell," he replied. 



400 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

*' what I want is a helpmate ; and I think I know of one 
tv^ho would suit me excellently well." 

" That is fortunate indeed," said the still totally uncon- 
scious Tyrell. 

** Yes, fortunate, if the other party should be agreeable." 

"Well, I hope she will, Mr. Bowles. I am sure you 
deserve a good wife, and I wish you success." 

" Are you sure you do, Mrs. Tyrell," said the butler in 
rather a pointed manner, which caused her to look up from 
her employment at the speaker. He felt that this was the 
decisive moment ; he must speak now or never. *' Suppose 
the person should be yourself, Mrs. Tyrell 1 " 

" Me ! " she replied with unaffected surprise, as she stood 
with a saucepan in her hand. Then, gently setting it down, 
she said, " Pray, Mr. Bowles, do not say another word of 
that sort ; if you speak in jest, it is a foolish jest, and if in 
earnest, then it is a foolish thought." 

'• Bless my soul ! I do not make jokes of that sort," 
replied Bowles. " I never was more in ea.rnest in all my life." 

"Then I am very sorry," replied Tyrell. " I wish you 
had spoken in jest." 

" Why so, Mrs. Tyrell 1 There is no one I esteem and 
value as I do you. As for myself, 1 will say nothing; 
you see what I am. I can oiler you a good home, I know, 
and a good heart, I hope. I am not a man of gay or 
expensive habits ; I love my fireside, and wish to share it 
with you. I will say this much — I am a man whom you 
can depend upon, Mrs. Tyrell." 

"I am sure you are," she replied; "and with all ray 
heart I thank you for your good opinion of me ; every 
woman ought to feel grateful to an honest-hearted man who 
makes her the offer you have made to me. I am grateful to 
you ; but that must be alL Think no more about it." 

" But why? Is there anything amiss with me 1 Do you dis- 
like me 1 Do you think I could not make a woman happy ? " 



A DISMISSAL AND A PROPOSAL. 401 

" I have a great respect and regard for yoii, Mr. Bowles ; 
and I am sure yoii would make a very good husband ; but 
I never mean to marry." 

" Not to marry ! Then you mean to be an old 
maid ? " 

" Most people would call me one already," said Tyrell, 
smiling. 

" / don't call you one," replied Bowles, getting quite ani- 
mated ; " T think you are a charming and very elegant 
woman. If you were only dressed just a little better, you 
would beat the fine lady up-stairs, our mistress, all to 
nothing." 

'' I am afraid I shall never dress any better," replied 
Tyrell. 

'^ Yes, but you will, if you will consent to be my wife. 
You shall never want for your handsome silk govv^n and 
bonnet, and all to match ; not gaudy, but neat and genteel, 
and of good materials. Come, Mrs. Tyrell, say a word of 
encouragement. " 

"^'I cannot, Mr. Bowles ; indeed, I cannot." 

" Then it is the religion, I am thinking," said the butler 
after a short pause. ^' You are a Eoman Catholic, and I 
am a Protestant ; but this need be no objection. Everyone, 
I always say, has a right to enjoy his or her opinion. The 
Catholic religion is a very good one, I daresay. I have 
known very good Catholics in my time, and you're a good 
one, if any is. It can't be a bad religion, for the tree is 
known by its fruits. If so be we marry, and settle at the 
Wells — there's a Boman Catholic church there — I'd as 
soon, as like as not, take a sitting at it as at the parish 
church ; and you may depend anyhow that I should never 
interfere with your religion." 

" Do let us drop the subject, Mr. Bowles ; it cannot be. 
I again repeat what I have already said, and can most 
solemnly assure you it is the truth. I have resolved never, 

2 D 



402 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

never to many. I am sure you do not think I would tel. 
an untruth, and on so serious a matter, too." 

Her manner was so firm and conclusive, that Mr. Bowles 
could not but feel that the game was played out, and that he 
had failed. He heaved a sigh, and observed that all his 
hopes of happiness were dashed to the ground. He had no 
one to share his home with him ; he was a desolate man. 
Poor Mr. Bowles was sincere in what he said. His disap- 
pointment was great, and something very like a tear stood 
in his big eye. 

" Mr. Bowles," said Mrs. Tyrell kindly, " you need not 
be desolate, you must not be desolate. If you mean to 
leave service and settle, then you had much better seek a 
wife to cheer your home. There can be no difficulty in your 
finding one. You have thought of me because we have 
been thrown so much together, and you had marriage in 
your head already. It was not a preference for me that 
suggested to you the idea ; it was because you were intend- 
ing to marry, that you thought of me. Now, Mr. Bowles, 
is it not true that before we met you had resolved to 
marry 1 " 

" Well, I cannot deny that it was in my head." 

" Then," continued Tyrell, " you have only to throw 
yourself back into the state of mind you were in then, and 
act as you would have acted had I never come. Doubtless^ 
you would have fixed your choice on some one else." 

" Perhaps so ; but it is not easy to be as if things had not 
been." 

^'But nothing really has been. What you have looked 
to was an impossibility from first to last. Now that you 
know this, a sensible man like you will turn to what is 
possible." 

" And what is possible ? " asked the disappointed 
suitor. 

" Will you let me venture to give you some advice, Mr. 



A DISMISSAL AND A PROPOSAL. 4:03 

Bowles ? It is meant in all kindness and friendship, and I 
think it is good advice." 

" Whatever comes from you I shall value and respect." 

" Well, then, did it never occur to you that Mrs. Roper 
would make you a good wife ? She is a clever, managing 
voman. She is very cheerful, and would keep a home tidy 
and comfortable. I know that she highly respects and 
esteems you j and I am inclined to think, besides, that she 
would not be ill-disposed towards you, should you make 
advances to her. I am not in her confidence, certainly. If 
I were, I should be silent as to her sentiments. As it is, 
I only give you my impressions." 

" Mrs. Tyrell, I can think of no one but you at present." 

" But it is no use your thinking of me." 

" And then, as to Mrs. Roper," he continued, " I know 
she has her merits, I am not blind to them ; but it strikes 
me she is a little sharp and testy, and even ill-natured at 
times. I don't like that," 

" Mrs. Roper is not an ill-tempered woman at all," said 
Tyrell ; ''neither is she an ill-natured one. I think you are 
hard upon her. Have you been quite the same to her lately] 
Mrs. Roper is sensitive, and I have observed — excuse me 
for saying so — that you have been rather tart to her some- 
times. Perhaps she thinks you do not like her as well as 
you did ; and, if it is as I say, this must pain her. You 
ought to be the last person in the world to find fault with 
that." 

" Then you think Mrs. Roper likes me, do you 1 " 

" I think she would like you, if you were to pay any 
serious attentions to her. Why should she not 1 " 

" Why not, surely 1 " repeated Bowles, whose self-love was 
rather soothed by this question. 

" I have sometimes thought," continued Tyrell, " from one 
or two expressions that have dropped from her, that she has 
felt hurt at your often sitting in the kitchen lately when she 
2d 2 



404 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

was in the housekeeper's room, and there seemed no reason 
why you should not be there also when disengaged. I fancied 
that she suspected you did it to avoid her ; and, as the pos- 
sibility of any other motive never crossed my mind, I must 
confess I was half inclined to think 'the same. Now, Mr. 
Bowles, do just reflect : if Mrs. Roper is favourably disposed 
towards you, or has only warm feeling* of friendship and 
regard, she would naturally be greatly mortified and pained 
by behaviour of this sort. Surely, this consideration will go 
far to excuse any slight inequality of temper. Wounded 
feelings, debarred from expressing themselves, will take that 
form. We are such weak creatures, you see ; and this is a 
weakness which you, at least, may well pardon." 

" Dear me ! " said Bowles, who was both a vain and a 
tender-hearted man. The last shot had evidently told upon 
him, but what he was going to say I know not ; for a ring 
at the area bell announced M. Pat tin's arrival. 

Such, then, was Mrs. Tyi-ell's revenge ; for she never for 
a moment doubted but that it was Mrs. Roj^er who had 
repeated, with more or less distortion and exaggeration, 
the conversation in the servants' hall which had led to her 
dismissal. Yet she had not judged her harshly, or con- 
demned her severely. Tyrell was not one of those who 
from one wrong act argue a habit of committing it ; and 
she had spoken sincerely when she said that Mrs. Roper 
was not an ill-natured person. They had always been good 
friends, and why in the present instance she should have 
been induced to act in an unkind manner Tyrell knew not, 
and had not cared to inquire ; but when Mr. Bowles made 
her the unexpected offer, the truth flashed upon her. 
Having previously observed indications of liking on Roper's 
part, she now saw that she had spoken under the influence 
of irritation caused by jealousy and the disappointment of 
her hopes. Tyrell, accordingly, experienced nothing but 
the sincerest pity for all the poor woman must have 



A DISMISSAL AND A PROPOSAL. 405. 

suffered, and a desire to repair the mischief of which she 
had herself been the unconscious occasion. 

In the meantime the unhappy Roper, having done all 
she could, short of avowing the real truth, to remove the 
evil impression made on Mrs. Wjndham's mind, resolved 
to attempt something, with the same reserve, in the way of 
excuse to her injured fellow-servant. "Mrs. Tyrell," she 
said, having found her alone, " I have been fretting so 
much — you cannot think how much — lest you should fancy 
I had played you an ill turn. My lady did question me so, 
T scarce knew what I said — I mean about the play and what 
you thought about play-going ; and I certainly said, God 
forgive me ! that you did not think play-going right ; and, 
you see, my lady goes very often, so she took the blame 
to herself" Of course here was a fresh piece of misre- 
presentation, still this time the poor creature was not 
actuated by malice, but partly by an anxiety to exculpate 
herself and partly by the desire of confessing a portion of 
her fault; and some credit was due to her, small as it was, 
for this desire, for she need not have taken the onus of 
tale-bearing on herself The tears were in her eyes as she 
made this incoherent speech. 

Tyrell pitied her from her heart, and kindly took her 
hand. " Dear Mrs. Roper," she said, " do not distress your- 
self on my account. I should have been content to stay, 
and I am content to go. Whatever pleases God, pleases 
me. I have not been taken by surprise, I assure you ; for 
I expected to receive warning before long, when I saw how 
much my mistress was annoyed the other day. That 
was before a word had been said by you or by any one else." 

"I shall probably also leave," said Roper, "before we 
return to London. I cannot face another season ; it tells 
upon me." 

" Mr. Bowles seems unsettled, too," replied Tyrell. 

" Indeed ! " said Roper ; " did he tell you so % " 



406 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

** He spoke of retiring from service altogether ; I fancy- 
he has wherewithal to do so comfortably," 

" I believe he has." Then there was a pause. Roper 
■wondered what Tyrell was going to say next. Was it 
possible that she was paving the way to the confession of 
an engagement 1 She was soon relieved .on that score. 

" Mr. Bowles," said Tyrell, "is a very good sort of man. 
I have sometimes wished that you two might see your way 
to an agreement. I do not think you could either of you 
do better." 

" Law ! Mrs. Tyrell," exclaimed Roper, " what ever put 
such an idea into your head 1 Mr. Bowles will not think 
of me — not now^ for certain. Mr. Bowles is a changed man.'* 

" I am not so sure that he might not think of you. Dear 
Mrs. Roper, you will excuse the liberty 1 am taking — if 
I were not going so soon, I should not have ventured upon 
such a remark — but I must just say that, if you think you 
could be happy with Mr. Bowles, and I don't know why 
you should not, I am of opinion that the matter rests a 
great deal with yourself. You think Mr. Bowles changed, 
but it is just possible that he may think you so. Mr. Bowles 
is a man who likes to be comfortable, you know ; and 
1 fancy, if he liked a woman ever so much, he would give 
her up if he suspected her temper was not quite even- 
I am sure you are not ill-tempered at all, but I have seen 
you a little sharp in your manner sometimes in his presence, 
and your face not looking as bright as it can look — not, in 
short, doing you justice. Anything of this nature would 
tend to estrange him. Please excuse me, and take what 
I have said in good part — I am wanted now." 

Tyrell did not wish for an answer, and Roper would have 
been embarrassed to find one. The comfort she had received, 
however, was very great. She was made aware that Tyrell 
put the mildest construction on what had occurred, while 
her hopes of securing Mr. Bowles's affections were revived ; 



DISCOMFORTS AND DISAPPOINTMENTS. 407 

nay, she began to imagine that it was through her own 
UD founded jealousy that he had been partially alienated 
from her. She would follow the advice given her. 

Certainly, this was the first time that Mrs. Tyrell had 
attempted to make a match ; prompted thereto partly by 
the generosity of her forgiving heart, and partly by the 
desire to make two people happy. I think that her pious 
manoeuvre was successful, and have reason to believe that 
Mrs. Roper, now Mrs. Bowles, was settled comfortably at 
the Wells before another year had elapsed, with the 
stationery shop prospering, and a " quiet lodger " on the 
drawing-room fioor. 



CHAPTER XXXIY. 

DISCOMFORTS AND DISAPPOINTMENTS. 

On the Friday morning Mrs. Wyndham's mind had re- 
sumed its habitual equilibrium. She and her two girls 
had been out on the Thursday night. Emma had, to all 
appearance, enjoyed her ball as much as ever, and had 
danced a great deal. A certain Lord Tyndrum had begged 
to be introduced, and had paid her most marked attentions, 
which the young lady had received as she usually received 
such things in theii' beginnings — not ungraciously, but as 
matters of course. Lord Tyndrum was the owner of many 
miles of moorland and mountain in the Highlands. He had 
just come of age, his father was dead, and he was reckoned 
a good parti. He was tall, but did not very well know 
how to manage his height. He was, however, presentable 
in point of looks, with a good-natured but not very Intel 
lectual countenance. Of course Lord Tyndrum had a card 



408 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

of invitation for the soiree dansante at Mrs. Wyndliam's. 
She, poor woman, observing that her daughter did not 
mope after her lost lover, but accommodated herself very 
gaily with what came to hand, began to flatter herself that 
the preference for Captain Baines had nothing after all very 
alarming in it. All fish were welcome to Emma's net — 
that had always been her own opinion. Now she began 
almost to regret the necessity of so soon removing from 
London, particularly as there was a new admirer on the 
scene, who appeared really in earnest, and to whom no ob- 
jection could be raised. There was still a week remaining, 
however. Much might be done in that time ; Lord Tyn- 
drum was young, and had not learnt caution. He was 
evidently greatly smitten, and would move fast. So all 
things looked propitious. Perhaps Parliament would not 
be dissolved, and Spanish bonds, it was to be hoped, would 
rise. Mrs. Wyndham was a woman of elastic spirit. 

"That Scotch laird," Gertrude said to her sister, as 
they were going to bed after the ball, " paid you great 
attention." 

" Yes, I never knew any one make such furious love on 
such short notice. One can see he is very green." 

" But you did not seem to dislike it 1 " 

"Why should I ? It was very amusing for once in a 
way." 

" They say he is rich," remarked Gertrude. 

" He may be as rich as he or any one else could wish, 
for aught I care," rejoined her sister. " I am not going 
to marry Lord Tyndrum." 

" I did not suppose you were." 

" I would not pick him up with the tongs, even if I cared 
for no one else." 

*' I am sure, Emma, T do not want you to marry him ; but 
I do not know why you should speak so contemptuously of 
the poor young man." 



DISCOMFORTS AND DISAPPOINTMENTS. 409 

" Of the rich young man, you mean. If he was a poor 
man, people would not look at him ; and, if they did, they 
would say he was a gauk. Besides, he is a regular muff." 

" I never can quite make out what a muff means/' rejoined 
Gertrude. 

" Then I certainly cannot explain the word. You are 
rather muffy yourself, Gertrude, I think." 

Poor Gertrude ! She was muffy ! That was all she had 
got in return for having, in her unreasoning love for this 
sister of hers, been guilty, for her sake, of a gross equivo- 
cation. 

And now the reader may perhaps be curious to know 
what were Emma's plans. Had she any ? "We have seen 
that she was resolved to have her own way. She meant to 
marry Captain Baines, whatever father, mother, or brother 
might say or do ; did she, then, propose to elope with him ? 
No ; Emma had no such intention. Though she cannot be 
Said to have been well brought up, yet there are few girls 
who have enjoyed even a moderate degree of good rearing 
but recoil, at least in the first instance, from the idea of a 
positive elopement. Emma also, although deficient in 
wamith of heart and tenderness, was not altogether heart- 
less ; and, although she certainly did not love her parents 
very passionately, nevertheless she did love them in her 
way, particularly her mother, who had been so uniformly 
indulgent to her. She would have shrunk accordingly from 
dealing so cruel a blow to their feelings as an elopement 
would inflict. She was prepared, indeed, to go against their 
wishes, but not in that manner. Emma was now near upon 
twenty ; in little more than a year she would be of age, and, 
consequently, her own mistress. "When that time came, she 
would marry her lover, in despite of all opjDosition. True, 
she would probably not obtain the consent of her parents, 
and would have to walk out of her father's house against his 
declared will, but this she could do in the face of day, and 



410 



THE VVYNDHAM FAMJLY. 



without concealment. No doubt, some friend's door would 
be open to her, from whose house she could be married. This 
was Emma's plan, which she meant on the first opportunity 
to communicate to the object of her affections. A year had 
to be got through, a long year, but Emma had inherited her 
mother's spirit, and was determined to face her difficulties 
and annoyances bravely. She had settled in her own mind 
that the most prudent course was to allow all suspicions and 
anxieties to subside ; she would be cheerful as usual. At 
the time that she contemplated different tactics, it was with 
a view to the extorting a consent, then not a desperate hope ; 
but now things were changed. If her mother and brother 
should see that she was unhappy, thej? would know the 
cause, and, in order to cure her of her love, would be raking 
up every manner of accusation against Captain Baines, and 
collecting every report they could pick up to his disad- 
vantage. She did not want to hear such reports. She did 
not believe them, whatever they might be, and she did not 
wish her family to know that she had heard them, for, as a 
matter of course, they would believe them. Besides, who 
could tell what precautions might be adopted to keep her 
and her lover asunder ! No, she would keep her own 
counsel till she struck twenty-one, and then she would act 
for herself. 

The house on Friday was redolent of the fumes of pre- 
paration. " I feel," said Emma, " as if I was absorbing the 
essence of mock turtle at every pore." 

" It is because they will not keep that door shut," said 
Mrs. Wyndham ; " and I have spoken about it so often." 

" It is deliberately hooked back, I declare," cried Emma, 
unfastening and shutting the door at the top of the kitchen 
stairs. 

" What is that enormous thing in the hall ? " asked her 
mother. 

" That must be Mr. Devereux's violoncello," replied 



DISCOMFORTS AND DISAPPOINTMENTS. 411 

Emma. " He said he would send it to-day. I hope Minny 
■v^dll not forget the music-books." 

Mrs. Wyndham was now thoroughly in her element 
again. Never was she so proud or so happy as when 
receiving company or preparing for that grand object. Her 
rooms were good and sufficiently large for the purpose of 
entertainment. They also showed to advantage on such 
occasions, as there were several mirrors in the drawing- 
rooms, the papering of which lighted up singularly well ; 
but, above all, she had two pretty daughters and a handsome 
son. Surrounded with so charming a family, and, as she 
flattered herself — and not, indeed, without cause — still 
possessing in her own person a considerable amount of 
matronly beauty, an evening such as she was now antici- 
pating, notwithstanding all its accompanying anxieties and 
perturbations, was a kind of triumph ; it was a bright spot 
in life's path. This bright spot had been overshadowed by 
the cloud which Emma's love affair had raised, but now the 
apprehensions on that score were nearly dispelled, and the 
sun was peeping out again. Mrs. Wyndham was one who 
enjoyed her pleasures thoroughly, and with a zest rare save 
in early youth, and she was proportionately annoyed when 
anything came to mar them. Relieved with regard to her 
daughter, she endeavoured also to dismiss the unpleasant re- 
flections connected with impending elections and depreciated 
Spanish bonds, and to throw herself heart and soul into 
the gaiety of the present. But then — there is always a 
" but then " in these cases ; there is always a Mardochai at 
the gate in some shape or other. Mrs. Wyndham's Mardo- 
chai was her brother John. His, to her, afflicting presence 
at the coming festivity had been almost forgotten under the 
pressure of serious uneasiness ; now it rose up before her 
again to poison her satisfaction. Emma had made the most 
fuss about this imaginary grievance, but Mrs. Wyndham 
had felt it really the most. Emma cordially disliked her 



412 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY, 

uncle, and consoled herself, or had consoled herself up to 
the time when the brooch was presented to her, by quizzing 
and abusing him unmercifully in his absence ; but Mrs. 
Wyndham, though she disliked her brother's visit, and, above 
all, abhorred the necessity of displaying him before her 
fashionable friends, could not be said to dislike him per- 
sonally, and lacked, therefore, this consolation, such as it 
was. After all, as she said, he was her brother, and the 
sense of this near relationship gave her a consciousness of 
solidarity with him, which increased the bitterness of her 
mortification. It could therefore afford her no relief to 
ridicule him, or hear him ridiculed ; we have seen, indeed, 
that Emma's observations, completely as they expressed her 
own feelings, were even painful to her. Emma, however, 
was now grown comparatively quiet on the subject, partly 
because she feared to appear ungrateful for her present, but 
still more because her mind was filled with her own all- 
absorbing secret. Perhaps Mrs. "Wyndham fretted the more 
now against this annoyance because her daughter had 
apparently grown more indiJQferent to it. 

" What Baines is this 1 " asked Mr. Wyndham, as they 
all sat at breakfast together on the Saturday morning, — he, 
as usual, having his newspaper accompaniment in hand — 
" Everard Baines, of Tetherby Hall, Yorkshire, who is just 
dead 1 Is that any relation of the chap with the black 
whiskers who is to dine here to-day 1 " 

" He does not dine with us," answered his wife ; "a tele- 
gram called him into Yorkshire. I suppose that is his 
uncle, and that he was sent for." 

John Sanders meanwhile, who was in the act of conveying 
a spoonful of egg to his mouth, stayed it on its passage, and^ 
fixing his eyes on Wyndham, looked as if he were about to 
speak. Now, his sister had entreated him not to say a 
word of the unfortunate afiair at Palermo or of Captain 
Baines's disreputable character to her husband, on the plea 



DISCOMFORTS AND DISAPPOINTMENTS. 413 

of his extreme sensitiveness on such points. The same 
reason had been alleged with regard to Emma. " The poor 
child would feel so intensely mortified," she had said, " at 
having been a frequent partner in the dance with a cheat 
at cards." If Emma was not to be told, neither, of course, 
was Gertrude. " I will take an opportunity to break it to 
them all by-and-by," Mrs. Wyndham had said. Her brother 
John thought all these precautions very absurd, but he 
acquiesced after a fashion, and said he would l)e silent 
unless forced to speak out. What might John consider as 
sufficient provocation to render speaking irresistible ? There 
was no saying. It was very difficult to gag her brother — 
this she knew, and was therefore under considerable alarm. 

" He has died suddenly of apoplexy," continued her 
husband; "how many men die of that complaint now-a- 
days ! ' It is believed that his nephew, Mr. Randall 
Baines, of Hammerbridge, will inherit the property.' Is 
that your friend ? " 

" I think not, but I am sure I do not recollect what he 
signed himself," replied his wife. By this time poor Mrs. 
Wyndham did not well know whether she was on her head 
or her heels. Emma was scarlet, and Gertrude nearly as 
red as her sister, but John, who had swallowed his mouthful 
of egg, as much at least as had not remained at the corners 
of his mouth, was still looking steadfastly at his brother-in- 
law, and would certainly say something, she was sure, if she 
did not administer a sharpish reminder. She was sitting 
next him, so quietly placed her foot on his and pressed it. 

" Holloa ! Betty ; what are you about 1 " almost shouted 
her brother ; "that is my worst corn." 

" I really beg your pardon, John, but I had a kind of 
cramp in my foot ; I am seized with it sometimes when 
I have had to stand a great deal." 

" Then, please, warn me another time when one of these 
fits is likely to come on," replied her brother. " I shall be 



414 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

as lame as a tree this evening. Emma and I were going to 
lead off the ball together — didn't you know that V 

" What the deuce is the matter 1 " said Wyndham, laying 
down his paper. 

" Nothing is the matter," answered Mrs. Wyndham. 
"John, your face is all over egg," — this was by the way, 
and Sanders proceeded to wipe his face with his napkin. "Did 
I tell you, Percy," she said, again turning to her husband, 
"that the haunch of venison from Chiselton arrived yester- 
day 1 " She knew very well she had told him, but a diversion 
of the conversation was imperative. 

" Yes, you told me. Don't you remember I said I hoped 
it was not too fresh 1 " 

"To be sure, I do now. I hear it is in prime condition 
for cooking ; " and so the Baines incident passed over. 

But it had given Emma enough to think about. That 
was her lover's uncle, sure enough, but it must certainly be 
an error about Mr. Bandall Baines of Hammerbridge. She 
had never heard of this man. Of course her Frederick must 
be the heir ; and no one, after all, could know anything to 
the contrary, for the will as yet would not have been opened, 
and he was considered by everybody to occupy the j)osition 
of a son to this old gentleman : so he had told her, at least, 
and he was everybody to her. Nevertheless she felt un- 
comfortable. Old gentlemen sometimes change their minds 
and disappoint their expectant heir. The newspaper, indeed, 
mentioned another nephew as the expected heir ; there was 
a confusion, of course — she knew better. Still it must be 
owned that Emma was uncomfortable. 

Annoyances seldom come singly. As they were about to 
rise from table, a flat parcel and note were handed to 
Miss Wyndham by James, who informed her that Miss 
Vincent's servant was waiting for an answer. " Those are 
the music books," observed Emma ; *"' you can take them 
up to the drawing-room, James. What can Minny have 



DISCOMFORTS AND DISAPPOINTMEXTS. 415 

to say?" and she opened her note. " Oh, Mama, how pro- 
voking ! Mr. Devereux cannot come ; what are we to do 1 " 

** My dear Emma, 

" I am sorry to say my cousin was seized with a bad 
sore throat yesterday evening, and was so ill in the night that 
the doctor was sent for early this morning, and he says it 
is diphtheria. Of course he cannot keep his engagement 
either to the dinner or the party, and you would not desire 
to have him if he could. T have sent the violoncello 
accompaniment, however, in the forlorn hope of catching a 
performer. You had better try also, but I fear it is quite 
too late in the day. Those who can play that instrument, 
and there are not many, dislike doing so before company 
without a previous rehearsal. It is quite a misfortune, but 
we must jingle away with the other two instruments as 
brilliantly as we can. The harp I will send in the course 
of the afternoon." 

" The loss of the violoncello performer is irreparable, 
Mama," said Emma. 

" And there will be the gap at the dinner table, too," 
replied her mother. 

" We seem doomed to have a Banquo's seat," observed 
Mr. Wyndham. 

" We need not have that ; Gertrude had better dine vdih 
us," replied his wife. " Nothing is so bad as an empty 
place." 

" Not even you, Gertrude," said her uncle ; " you are 
just a degree better, or less bad, than nothing." 

" I wish I was worse than nothing," replied his niece. 
" I do dislike dining with this party so much." 

" We can't always do what we like, my dear," said her 
father. 

"Now I must be oflf somewhere and every where, to beat 



416 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

up for a recrnit," said Emma, who had been scribbling a 
few hurried lines to her friend. '* I can have the brougham, 
I suppose, Mama ; indeed I cannot do without it." 

" Really I can ill spare you^'' said her mother ; *' and 
James is certainly wanted." 

" I will manage without James; I can open the brougham 
myself." 

" That will never do, Emma ; I should not like the 
appearance of such a thing at all." 

" It is now that we miss the ' buttons,' Mama. But what 
is James wanted for so much ? The men are coming to take 
up the carpet, and they will move the furniture. Besides, 
I shall not be long, for I want to get back." As usual, 
Emma had her way, and the brougham was ordered. 

" I don't think this looks very hard," said Uncle John 
to Gertrude, when they had gone up to the drawing-room. He 
was turning over the leaves of one of the music books, occa- 
sionally moistening his forefinger to aid the operation, as 
poor children do with their lesson books. Gertrude was glad 
no one witnessed this proceeding except herself ; not but that 
it was rather disagreeable to her, and had she known her 
uncle a little longer, she would have taken courage to 
remonstrate. 

" What do you mean % " 

*' I mean the violoncello accompaniment. It is plain 
sailing enough. Upon a pinch, I think I could manage 
it, even though I should play it at sight," 

" Then you play the violoncello, uncle % I did not know 
that." 

" No more than you knew that I had read Tasso. What 
a lout of a fellow I must look ! " > 

*' I did not mean any such thing, I am sure, uncle. Only 
so few people can play the violoncello, and so few men can 
play anything." 

"You see, I am one of the few; but I am not at all 



THE DINN'ER PARTY. 417 

anxious to display my powers. Let us see if Emma or her 
friend can catch a performer. If they cannot, then I will 
step forward to the rescue, if you think they will accept 
me." 

" Accept you ! I should think they would indeed, and 
be thankful." 

" But keep it to yourself, my little woman. I like sur- 
prises, and wish to make myself as valuable as I can by the 
help of one. To be sure, what a state this room is in ! " 

" There will be nothing like comfort all day long," said 
Gertrude. "As for me, I am tired already. But Mama and 
Emma enjoy the bustle. I wish we were at Palermo, 
uncle." 

" Ah ! we would be jolly — would we not ? No taking up 
carpets there, if you have a mind for a hop, for we never 
have any down. I have a villa outside the town at the foot 
of Monte Pellegrino — that is our Saiut's mountain — and 
with a glorious view of the blue sea. T think it would 
please you, Gertrude. And the flowers ! Sicily is the garden 
of the world for flowers, certainly. And the air — that 
delicious air ! You live twice over in one day in that 
heavenly climate. I am getting as stufiy in my chest here 
as an asthmatic grampus, if there is such an animal ! 
Well, I must go out now to get a mouthful of carbonated 
oxygen." 



CHAPTER XXXY. 

THE DINNER PARTY. 

It was rather difiicult to account for the species of position 
which Sir Philip Eagle had won for himself, and for the 
privileges and immunities which he enjoyed, in a certain 

2e 



418 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

circle of his own. Pei^onally he was far from attractive. 
He was rather tall, but lost the advantage of his height 
fi'om a habit of poking, apparently caused by his short sight. 
He was always lowering his head a little to meet his hand 
and eye-glass, that is when the glass itself was not detained 
in its place by a certain contraction of the facial nerves, a 
faculty possessed by some short-sighted persons, which, if a 
convenient one, certainly does not contribute to their beauty. 
Sir Philip had a hooked nose, rather round and lack-lustre 
eyes, of which the stare was peculiarly unpleasant, a 
luxuriant growth of grey whiskers, and a slightly projecting 
stomach. Such was Sir Philip Eagle's outward man. He 
was of good family, and had an ample fortune ; but neither 
rank nor riches in his case were such as to account satisfac- 
torily for the prestige which surrounded liim or the practical 
value in which he was socially held. He was a man who 
in one way was liberal : he never bargained where it was a 
question of worldly ease or of what he regarded as enjoyment ; 
he paid his tradesmen regularly, and gave his servants high 
wages. It was said — with what truth I know not — that 
his cook had a hundred a year, but I am not aware that 
many acts of charity or generous kindness could be recorded 
of him. He had done little apparently to earn the love of 
any single individual, and perhaps no one did exactly love 
him ; nevertheless, he was well received, his company was 
often coveted and solicited, and, to crown all, he enjoyed the 
privilege of being both rude and disagreeable unrebuked, 
and an astonishing immunity even from the censure which 
would appear to be necessarily entailed by such conduct. 
Sir Philip's rudeness and disagreeableness were received 
and admitted as facts, just as the trunk or tusks of an 
elephant might be. You do not wish to come in contact 
with either, but the animal who owns them is considered 
a noble beast, if only for his size, and for his possession of 
these weapons, and you exhibit and parade him with a 



THE DINNER PARTY. 419 

certain deference and respect. Sii' Philip was exhibited and 
paraded in like manner, for he was not merely tolerated, 
but coui-ted in a way. Neither was it his good dinners 
which brought him these attentions, for he gave very few 
dinners, and asked a very limited number of intimates to his 
table. Many persons were glad to see him at their own 
tables who had no expectation that the compliment would 
be repaid. Sir Philip, indeed, did not profess to repay such 
or any compliments. He lived for himself, and did not 
like entertaining — in short, he made no secret that perfect 
selfishness was his rule of life. 

And why was such a man tolerated ] Why was he 
allowed to offend against the courtesies of society and be ill- 
mannered at his pleasure ? I do not know. The only reply 
that can be made, I suppose, is that some persons seem to 
have the gift of thus domineering over others and impressing 
them with a certain social awe ; and, when they happen to 
be well-off in point of position and worldly wealth the gift 
is, of course, rendered more prominent and effective ; but I 
am of opinion that, after all, it is a gift. [N'everwas there a 
truer saying than that one man can steal a horse, andi 
another may not look over the hedge. Sir Philip was the 
man who could steal the horse, and not incur so much as a 
remonstrance. But why should Mr. Wyndham value thi? 
man so highly 1 This is almost as difficult to explain as 
the individual's own success, but the most obvious reason 
would appear to have been the inordinate value which our 
friend set on good appoiatments and a good table — a value 
which led him to treat the great gastronome as a sort of god. 
Not that he was himself either a glutton or an epicure, 
though, having a bad stomach, he was rather hard to please ^ 
but such was his hobby, or, rather, one of his hobbies. To 
get into public life and to give good dinners were Mr. 
Wyndham's two hobbies. In neither had he been eminently 
successful. He had not attained to office, and his elections 
2 E 2 



420 THE WYXDHAM FAMILY. 

had cost him so much that he had never been able, — at least, 
so his economical wife had judged — to keep a first-rate cook. 

To-day, however, as he believed, and as Mrs. Wyndham 
liked to believe, a first-rate artist had been secured to honour 
and win the approbation of the distinguished guest. For Sir 
Philip Eagle was not simply one of the guests ; the whole 
party was selected with a view to him (always excepting that 
black sheep, Mr. Jardine, who was an after-thought), and 
certainly, except with such a view, a duller and less attractive 
set could scarcely have been got together. So it seemed to 
Emma as she glanced round the table after they had sat 
down. Mr. Wyndham had muttered grace in rather a lower 
tone than usual, for he was not quite sure that Sir Philip was 
in the habit of giving any thanks for the good things he so 
intensely relished ; and he undoubtedly omitted the sign of 
the cross, a fact which John Sanders observed, and made 
his own accordingly in a specially demonstrative manner. 
Mrs. Wyndham saw this out of the corner of her bright 
eye, which nothing round the table ever escaped, and hoped 
that it was not the beginning of distressing singularities. 
Why must her very ordinary brother be always thus 
obtruding himself on notice ? He was not a vain man, and, 
had he been so, prudence might have led him to keep in 
the background when in polite society. But so it was : 
John Sanders never did keep well in the background, 
and there was no chance of his escaping observation. 
He had not on this occasion escaped the observation 
of Sir Philip's goggle eye, which, she saw, had noticed the 
evolution. 

" We have had several disappointments. Sir Philip," said 
Mr. Wyndham, addressing his guest from the other end of 
the table. " Besides the first melancholy failure, one gentle- 
man whom we asked was summoned to a dying uncle ; a 
second is all but, not quite, I hope, dying of diphtheria ; so 
we had to fill up the vacant places with another ^f ilky young 



THE DINNER PARTY. 421 

ladies, which makes the feminine as well as the family- 
element predominate more than I had intended ; I knew your 
dislike to lady dinner-parties. We are six to four, however." 

" I see only three feminine individuals here," said Sir 
Philip. " My friend Lady Mordaunt does not count. She 
is not feminiae at all." 

" How so ? " 

" She lacks all feminine attributes, I am sorry to say, as I 
have reason to know. She is my adversary at whist, and a 
most pitiless one. You ought to see her crowing and gloat- 
ing over her gains." 

" I have no pity on you, certainly, Sir Philip," said the 
lady j " you are a regular cormorant. And as for not being 
feminine, that does not trouble me. It is a fine thing, I 
suppose, to be a woman of a masculine mind." 

"Of a masculine understanding, I grant you ; but I 
never said you had that. I never said you were masculine 
even." 

" I hope not," said Mrs. Wyndham ; " it is a horrible 
epithet to apply to a lady." 

" My dowager has not spirit enough to deserve it. She 
has no fortitude, and does not know how to lose at cards 
with any better grace than she wins. Look at me and 
Abinger when we lose — that is the test of masculine forti- 
tude — why, we are as mute as horses which have tumbled 
down and lie sprawling in the ditch. Horses are noble 
animals, but our good lady there squeaks like a pig which is 
having its throat cut. What is this % " The question was 
addressed to the servant who placed his sou]) before him. 

" Mock turtle. Sir Philip." 

*' Better than real turtle, if good ; but it seldom is. As 
for young ladies smelling of bread and butter," he continued, 
levelling his eye-glass at poor Gertrude, *' I am rather of 
Lord Byron's opinion — they are somewhat insipid, present 
company a;lways excepted." 



422 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

" Tt is better to smell of bread and butter than of smoke 
and snuff, I should think, any day," said Emma, who could 
not restrain her indignation. Gertrude, of course, was 
quite unable to take her own part. 

*' Bravo ! Emma," exclaimed her uncle. '' I second that 
opinion. Viva the young ladies, and the bread and butter, 
too ! " 

" Who smells snuffy. Miss Wyndham 1 " said Sir Philip. 
" She must mean you, Poole." The toady was sitting next 
to Emma. 

*' That is really too bad, Sir Philip," said the injured little 
man. *■' I never smoke, nor have I ever kept a snuff-box in 
my pocket in my whole life." 

" No, T daresay not ; but that is because you find it more 
convenient to have your finger in every one else's box. 
Your neighbour there is well known for that trick at his 
club, Miss Wyndham. He is, besides, supposed to keep a 
private canister of cheap snuff for home consumption, when 
he cannot get the superior provision from his friends." 

" Not a syllable of truth, I protest." 

" Now I am the last to complain of snuff-taking," con- 
tinued Sir Philip, " and am not remarkable for my self- 
denying turn, but I always take care to abstain almost 
entirely from the indulgence when I am going out to 
dinner, from the time when I dress. After dinner I take it 
freely ; noses are grown callous by that time. But I say it 
is a shame for a man to go out stinking like a polecat, and 
take a charming young lady's appetite away by sticking him- 
self in her pocket." 

Mr. Poole laughed at Sir Philip's coarse jest, as heartily 
as if he had not been its object, and, turning to Emma, 
cheerfully observed that Sir Philip was in particularly good 
humour that evening. 

" Indeed ! " replied that young lady ; " and what is he 
like when out of humour 1 " 



THE DINNER PARTY. 423 

" Like the very deuce," said her other neighbour, Mr, 
Abinger, who had overheard the query. Mr. Abingerwas 
a pmrsy man with a red face and an inappreciable length of 
throat. His very appearance bespoke a threat of apoplexy, 
if that malady has really, as believed, any connection with 
short throats. He spoke little and, when he did speak, his 
voice was gruff, and seemed to proceed from an interior 
kind of cellar. 

Truly, the company was not of an engaging character. 
Mr. Jardine sat opposite Emma, He had taken in the unwill- 
ing Gertrude, who did not like him, and answered him, 
when he addressed her, in monosyllables. Accordingly, 
what with Gei-trude on one side, who would not be tempted 
into anything like conversation, and Lady Mordaunt, who, 
it must be owned, much resembled Emma's description, on 
the other, and whom he did not himself feel disposed to 
cultivate, poor Mr. Jardine was rather ill-off. No one seemed 
to notice him. Sir Philip perfectly ignored him ; indeed, 
Mrs. Wyndham had cleverly shirked the ceremony of an 
introduction ; she herself had been stiff and formal to him, 
and Mr. Wyndham, except when his eye chanced to rest 
on him, almost forgot his presence. With his host Mr, 
Jardine was a mere stopgap, and, besides, belonged to the 
ladies. Poor man ! he appeared to belong to no one in that 
circle, and, whether it w^ere from a sense of isolation or that 
he had something on his mind, he had a distressed and 
uncomfortable air about him. Yet to one person he was an 
object of considerable interest — that person was Emma; 
she noted the expression of his countenance, and w^ondered 
if he had any communication in store for her, and w4iat it 
might be. At the same time Mr. Jardrae was an unpleasant 
object even to her ; the necessities of her position had alone 
forced her to accept or tolerate him as a kind of interme- 
diary between herself and her lover, but the habits, if not 
the principles, of the young lady, made the necessity ^ 



424 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

distasteful one. There was no help for it, however, and 
he was the only person to whom she could look for any 
information touching the Yorkshire uncle's testamentary 
dispositions. He would probably volunteer some informa- 
tion in the course of the evening. 

Apparently Sir Philip did not reckon the mock turtle set 
before him as superior to real, and left his plate unfinished. 
Mrs. Wyndham, of course, observed the circumstance, but 
hoped that it had escaped tlie notice of her husband. Then 
followed the fish ; Sir Philip had some salmon, and nearly 
finished it, which was more satisfactory. As yet there was 
very little conversation round the table, although Mrs. 
Wyndham exerted herself to promote it, and that lady was 
reckoned remarkably successful in imparting liveliness to 
a dinner party ; nevertheless, on this occasion it was very 
up-hill Avork, for the materials were bad. Sir Philip fired 
an occasional shot at either his toady or his butt, and Mr. 
AVyndham tried to get up some political talk with Mr. 
Abinger, but without any very animated results. 

" What is this *? " asked Sir Philip, when one of the 
entrees was presented to him. ''I have the weakness to 
like to know what T am going to eat." 

" Cutlets," replied the servant, 

" Cotelettes a la Ste. Menehould,'' said Mrs. Wyndham, 
consulting the cai'te which lay beside her. 

" One of old Soyer's receipts, I suppose," muttered the 
gastronome half audibly ; and the anxious hostess thought 
she observed a shade of doubt and incipient contempt pass 
over his countenance. 

She was not wrong. Sir Philip turned his cutlet over 
and over, tasted a mouthful, then laid down his knife and 
fork, and allowed his plate to be removed. Alas ! alas ! 
the cutlets were evidently a failure. The next entree was 
declined with scarce a glance, and then Mrs. Wyndham, 
in despair, modestly suggested the venison on the side-table. 



THE DINNER PARTY. 425 

It was accepted, much to her relief, as her husband would 
have been sure soon to observe the empty plate and dis- 
engaged condition of the revered epicure. And, what was 
better still, Sir Philip liked the venison, and expressed 
his liking by graciously informing his host of the fact. 
" This venison," he said, " is admirably cooked, and melts 
in your mouth." So far, so good ; but, after all, thought 
Mrs. Wyndham to hereelf, the venison was cooked by Tyrell. 
The entrees were M. Pattin's, and they had been practically 
condemned. Poor Mrs. Wyndham had some difficulty in 
keeping up her spirits. 

'' I knew," said Mr. Poole to Emma, " that Sir Philip 
had got something he relished now. I saw that directly) 
from the way he handled his knife and fork." 

"The happy circumstance had better be telegraphed 
immediately to all the difi'erent gastronomic clubs in 
Europe," said Emma. 

" Well, that is a very funny idea. Miss Wyndham. It 
would have made Sir Philip laugh." 

Sanders, who overheard Emma's remark — Uncle John's 
ears were very sharp — never felt so much pleased with his 
niece as he did that moment, and endeavoured to repeat 
the joke in a whisper to Gertrude, who, to her great satis- 
faction, had got next him, but she was too bewildered to 
catch his meaning. 

Evidently it was a very dull dinner party, and likely to 
become more so, as the dispiriting truth should dawn upon 
the individuals composing it. It had already dawned upon 
Sanders, who disliked dulness, and who thought that for 
the credit of the family an attempt ought to be made to 
relieve it. He believed the chief cause to lie in the fact that 
Sir Philip had no one to keep up the ball with him. The 
toady and the butt were mere targets. Mr. Abinger was 
good for nothing but to eat his dinner and hold a hand at 
whist. Mrs. Wyndham was half afraid of her guest, and 



426 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

still more possessed with the fear that her husband would 
be disappointed ; while Wyndbam himself was not a lively 
man at his own table, nor, indeed, anywhere else. The 
lively element, the defunct Graham, was, in fact, wanting. 
He could have bandied jokes with Eagle, and given as good 
again in the way of retorts. So Sanders thought he would 
tackle Sir Philip himself, and make some stir at the table. 
As a preliminary he asked him to take a glass of wine, 
which was judged to be a most unnecessary proceeding by 
his sister. Was not the wine being carried round from 
time to time as a matter of course ] But John must put 
himself forward ; and, moreover, she feared (with truth) 
that this move on her brother's part was but the prelude to 
a further display of himself 

" With all my heart ! " responded Sir Philip. " I like 
the old fashion of hob-nobbing, which is going out under 
the influence of perambulating bottles, thrust under your 
nose in season and out of season. What wine will you take, 
Mr. Sanders?" 

" I stick to my Marsala. You must know, Sir Philip, 
that I make Marsala, and sell Marsala, and drink Marsala; 
what more can a man do by his wares than that ? " 

" You do your duty by them, it must be allowed. I never 
was myself a great consumer of Marsala. It is neither 
the one thing nor the other. It has not the refreshing 
lightness of French and Rhine wines, nor has it the body 
of port and sherry. To me it is poor sherry, and a mere 
betwixt and between." 

" Betwixts and betweens are very good things when they 
fill up a gap," said Sanders. " Now just try some of this 
wine. Sir Philip. I shall be glad to have the opinion 
of so good a judge of these matters ; and if you can 
suggest anything which would be an improvement, I 
shall be glad to know. I am always glad to get a fresh 
wrinkle. " 



THE DINNER PARTY. 427 

A wrintle ! the horrible expression ! Mrs. Wyndham 
positively writhed under it, and her eye instinctively 
wandered to her daughter Emma, but that young lady did 
not seem to be attending. She might have spared herself 
all her misery ; Sir Philip did not care the least about the 
polish of his company. He even affected a want of polish 
himself, though in him the defect w^as not owing to 
ignorance, as it was in the case of John Sanders ; he knew 
very well what were the manners and the refinement of the 
great world, and, if he sinned against them, he did it 
wilfully, because such was his pleasure. And more than 
this : he often deliberately failed in courtesy, a fault of 
which Mrs. Wyndham's brother was never guilty. She 
saw all this in a way, but then the very fact that Sir Philip 
uttered vulgarities, and even coarse remarks, intentionally, 
made all the difference in her eyes. It was " natural 
vulgarity," as she considered it, which was offensive. The 
same word or phrase which in one man's mouth was dis- 
gusting was mere sport in that of another ; and the indi- 
vidual who used it in jest could very well detect that the 
other man used it in his uncultivated ignorance. So Mrs. 
Wyndham knew that Sir Philip, for all his own un- 
mannered licence of tongue and behaviour, would rate at 
their just value any solecisms into which her brother might 
fall. He would know that he was a vulgar man, as surely 
as he knew that the cotelettes a la Ste. Menehould were not 
dressed by a first-rate cook. 

" Well, this is a capital wine, I must confess," said Sir 
Philip, sipping his Marsala. " I never tasted Marsala like 
this before, though I have drunk it in Sicily at the fountain 
head." 

" You may get it very bad in Sicily," said Sanders. 

" And this is your own 1 " 

" Yes, what I send my brother-in-law is all straight from 
my owTi wine cellars — goes through no dealer's hands. 



428 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

I mistrust your dealers. Bless your soul ! the trade would 
adulterate water if it paid to do so." 

" That they would," replied Sir Philip, *' Every man 
for himself in this world. As for me, I never grudge 
spending to procure the best to be had of meats and drinks, 
but there is one thing money cannot always do, much as it 
can do, and that is, secure you the genuine article. There 
is often not such a thing in the market. Does any man 
flatter himself he has ever drunk a glass of port or sherry 
that has not been doctored 1 The word is rather a good 
one, by the way, as applied to sherry. Those professional 
knaves, the doctors — there are no greater knaves than the 
doctors— took to praising sherry many years ago now. It 
was a good stomachic, they said. Their verdict went forth, 
and not only their patients, but everybody, sick or well, 
began drinking sherry, and the demand became so great 
that it very soon spoiled the sherry and made it unwholesome. 
Those fellows did the same with malt liquor. You cannot 
get a glass now of genuine racy old English ale, thanks to 
their recommendations of bitter beer ! " 

" The Sicilians adulterate their Marsala with their 
execrable brandy," said Sanders. 

" As for the mixing brandy with wine," said Sir Philip, 
*' I believe I am right in saying that foreign wines are 
always thus treated for the English market ; and it has so 
corrupted the palate here that, except among your chosen 
few, all relish for pure wine is gone." 

"Very true," rejoined Sanders. ''Even Bordeaux is 
doctored with brandy for our benefit, the very best con- 
taining six per cent, of spirit of wine. It is called the 
travaillage a VAnglaiser 

" Capital ! " replied Eagle. 

" However, as respects Italian wines," continued Sanders, 
" there are other faults not resulting from adulteration ; for, 
if you except Sicilian wines, much is not exported. The 



THE DINNER PARTY. 429 

indigenous wines are the beverage of the country, and, if 
thev content the population which consumes them, there is 
nothing much to encourage improvement. The vines are 
often planted in most uncongenial soil, and are allowed to 
run wildly about, wasting their vitality in wood and leaves. 
But, even when reared on poles, like our hops, you will 
find that they are seldom trained or pruned. Of course 
there are exceptions. You may drink excellent wine in 
Italy, but it is chiefly that raised and manufactured by- 
some landholders for their own consumption." 

" And what of the manufacture in a general way 1 " 

" Ah, that's the worst part of the job. It is enough to 
turn your stomach to see the grapes after being trodden — 
not a very tempting sight in itself — thrown together with- 
out any sorting, bad and good, ripe and unripe, into vats 
which have never been cleaned since the last year's vintage." 

" Don't they use a press ? " 

"Very seldom. And then the fermentation goes on as 
best it may — the system is most careless, or, rather, there 
is no system. Why, in France they will not suffer more 
than the pressure of one day's gathering to ferment together, 
but in Italy and Sicily — it's all the same — they will throw 
in fresh pressings in the height of the process." 

" Incredible ! " 

" It is only wonderful the wine turned out should be as 
di-inkable as it is. When I saw all this I said to myself, 
that with only tolerable care, and with such a soil, such a 
sun, and such a climate, very superior wines ought to be 
produced. So, as soon as my circumstances allowed of the 
experiment, I set to work to manufacture according to my 
own ideas ; and, when I had scraped a little money together, 
I bought a TngTia and cultivated my grape also. You have 
the result in your hand." 

" Long life to you, Mr. Sanders ! you have done and are 
doing a good work. And where is your vineyard 1 " 



430 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

" I have one on Etna ; volcanic land is very favourable. 
I sell the produce of that vineyard, but I have another in 
the Val di Mazara, where I have built a loggia, and got 
my wine-press, and so forth. I spend a good part of the 
summer and autumn there ; the vintage is a glorious time 
with us." 

" Hang me, if I should not like to see your process ! 
These things interest me amazingly." 

"Well, Sir Philip, we shall be delighted if you will honour 
us with a visit. You are a yachting man, I understand. 
Why not visit the Mediterranean this coming autumn? 
Your yacht can run in at Mazara, and you can leave it 
there. If you will let me know when to expect you, I will 
be on the look-out and will meet you. We live in a simple 
sort of way, but that will be a change perhaps, and make 
you enjoy getting back to grander fare, which is some- 
thing." 

" I suspect, John, that the only merit of the fare you 
would be able to offer Sir Philip," said his sister, " would 
consist in that circumstance. He would have to take his 
own cook with him." 

" No, I won't take my own cook with me. I'll trust my 
friend Mr. Sanders." 

" I can't promise much in the cooking line, of course,'' 
said Sanders. " Our Serafina does five or six things pretty 
well, when not too liberal of her garlic and oil ; so I tell 
her to stick to those half dozen dishes, and we ring the 
changes on them." 

" Why I am reckoned a nice man, I cannot think," said 
Sir Philip. 

" Who calls you a nice man 1 " asked Lady Mordaunt, 
" Not I, at any rate." 

" There is my Dowager down upon me again. Did not 
I tell you she had no mercy 1 Well, I suppose I am not 
what the ladies call a nice man, but I will refer the question 



THE DINNER PARTY. 431 

to one who is unsophisticated and latest from the school- 
room, your left hand neighbour, Mr. Sanders. I should 
like to know her opinion, and whether she would call me a 
nice man." Gertrude, thus appealed to, coloured up, but 
could not utter a syllable. 

" Speak out, and say something — can't you, Gertrude 1 " 
said her uncle, nudging her. 

" I cannot " — this was in a whisper. 

" My niece says, ' Not exactly,' " said Uncle John. 

" But I said nothing at all," remonstrated Gertrude, still 
sotto voce. 

*' ISTot exactly," repeated Sii- Philip, " not exactly a nice 
man ! I wonder how far off I am from the young lady's 
measure. However, the niceness I spoke of was different. 
I meant by nice, fastidious and particular. Kow I never 
complain of anything if it's good." 

" Who does ^ " asked Mrs. Wyndham laughing. 

"Plenty of people, ma'am. They complain, that they 
may seem to be connoisseurs. They really don't know when 
a thing is good, nor what good means. Anything is good, 
I take it, when it is good of its kind ; and so Mr. Sanders's 
female seraph may turn out very good dishes. What I 
hate is pretension. Pretension makes me sick." Then Mrs. 
Wyndham guessed that Sir Philip was thinking of the 
cotelettes a la Ste. Ifenekould, and her spirits sank. " When 
last I was in the Mediterranean in the Plover,'' continued 
Sii' Philip, " poor Graham was with me." 

'•' We were so sorry, and really quite shocked, to hear of 
his death," said Mrs. Wyndham. " He must be a great 
loss." 

" To himself, of course. I don't know that he is a loss 
to any one else. I miss him in a way, for he was a very good 
fellow to sit down to table with. But it was his own fault. 
He killed himself." 

" How dreadful I" exclaimed Mrs. Wyndham. "Actually 



432 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

committed suicide ! I suppose it has been hushed up ; the 
papers did not allude to anything of the kind." 

" He practically committed suicide," said Sir Philip ; " I 
did not mean that he blew his brains out, but he kept an 
assassin in his house ; in short, he died of — a bad cook ; one 
of your cooks with pretensions." 

*'I should have thought," said Mrs. Wyndham, who 
could not help smiling, although the subject was so serious, 
" that a person would be more likely to die of a good cook 
than of a bad one." 

*' There you are quite wrong. What is good, you eat with 
a relish ; what you relish, you digest. Poor Graham had a 
very delicate stomach, a ticklish sort of digestion ; cookery 
was everything to him. Well, he goes and engages un- 
advisedly a man for the season, one of those fellows who 
call themselves French cooks, but who have probably been 
nothing above marmitons in their own country. The first 
time I dined with Graham after this chap was in office, at 
the first mouthful I took, I laid down knife and fork, and 
said, ' Graham, part with that man. It is as much as your 
health is worth.' He said he would, but Graham was very 
indolent, and the next time I met him, seeing he was look- 
ing very seedy, I inquired, and found he had as yet done 
nothing. At last I stirred him up to part with the fellow. 
' Now Graham,' I said, ' this is a serious matter, you may 
depend upon it ' — for I saw what an altered man he was— 
'pack that poisoner off with his month's wages, and board 
wages, too, if necessary. Don't stick at a few shillings.' 
However, he disregarded my advice, not from stinginess, I 
know — he was not stingy — but from sheer want of energy, 
and he died — died before the month was up — died, I verily 
believe, of that man's diabolical cookery. The fellow is 
jobbing about town, I understand, at this minute, but 
his name ought to be posted up as a warning to the 
incautious." 



THE DINNER PARTY. 433 

Mrs, Wyndham, as she listened, felt a kind of dryness in 
her mouth, and a vague apprehension and presentiment, 
which would have hindered her from asking the name of the 
delinquent. At that moment she would have given some- 
thing that she had secured M. Louis at an}^ price. But 
Mr. Wyndham, who had heard every word of Sir Philip's 
speech, did ask the name. 

" I shall remember it in a minute — what was it, Poole ] 
I fancy it was Pattin, or some such name." 

" It was Pattin, Sir Philip," said the satellite. " I heard 
you say so at the time." 

Then there was an audible chuckle from some one standing 
at the side table. It was from Bowles, who had to stuff the 
napkin he held almost into his mouth to prevent himself 
from laughing outright. As for Mi's. Wyndham, poor soul, 
she felt that she could have died on the spot, of the fatal 
name, as Graham had of the individual's cookery. And Mr. 
Wyndham had heard the name, too. What must her hus- 
band think, what must he feel ? His state of mind was 
certainly not to be envied, and never perhaps had his con- 
jugal affection received so severe a shock. He felt that he 
had been betrayed, and thought he would never be able to 
trust his wife again. 

The ladies did not sit long, and Sanders was the first to 
follow them, as he wished to arrange with Emma about the 
music. 

" That brother-in-law of yours is a regular brick," said 
the great man to Wjmdham, when Sanders had left the 
table. 

But the great man had not approved the dinner, and it 
was poor consolation to the disappointed host to find that, 
if his feast had been a failure, his brother-in-law had been 
a success. "He is a very good fellow," he replied rather 
absently. Poor Mr. Wyndham was very sore and very sad, 
and very angry, too ; yet he was under the dire necessity of 



434 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

keeping up appearances and keeping down temper for the 
next three or four hours. Such are the pleasures of life in 
the world. 



CHAPTER XXXYI. 

THE CONCERT AND THE DANCE, 

" How could you talk so much to that odious Sir Philip, 
uncle 1 " asked Gertrude. 

" I find in the dictionary," said the uncle, " that odious 
means hateful, worthy of hatred. It is a strong word." 

" I mean very disagreeable ; I don't hate him, or any- 
body." 

" That's right, my dear." 

" But he can only talk of eating and drinking, uncle ; and 
you talked of nothing else, either. I was quite amazed." 

« Were you "? But what was I to talk about to him, as 
that was all he seemed inclined to talk about ? There he 
was, and I had to make the best of him. You cannot 
make more of a cat than his skin." 

" And you asked him to your Sicilian country-house." 

" That is, to meet you, my love ; and, if you prefer a sea 
voyage to a land one, I have no doubt Sir Philip would bring 
you out to me in the Plover, and you will think him a very 
' nice man' after a bit. You would find him very good- 
natured, I'll be bound, and you would live like a fighting 
cock. After all, he's not so bad a man. He has got some 
good in him, I daresay, when you learn how to draw it out." 

" O, Uncle John ! " 

" The good, if there is any, is well corked down," observed 
Emma ; " at present a man who could and would play the 



THE CONCERT AND THE DANCE. 435 

violoncello would be an angel to me, even if the man was 
Sir Philip." 

" Would he, indeed ! " said her uncle. " Then the post is 
still vacant 1 " 

" YeS; I was unsuccessful in my hunt." 

*' Will you try me ? I have been looking at the accom- 
paniment. It is easy, and I believe I could play it at 
sight." 

" You can play the violoncello 1 Dear me ! Why did 
you not say so this morning ? " ♦ 

" Because I thought you might get a better performer, so 
I kept my offer in reserve. Stay a minute, I must just fetch 
my spectacles," 

''Can we trust him, do you think, Gertrude?" asked 
Emma. " He will not break down, will he V 

" I am sure he will do very well. He would not offer 
himself if he was doubtful. Besides, Uncle John has a very 
good ear ; I have observed that ; I fancy he does not sing 
ill, and has been used to amateur concerts. Here he comes." 

" We are really much obliged to you, uncle," said Emma, 
much more graciously than usual ; " you are truly a friend 
in need." 

*' I am to be an angel, you know ; but I must wait for 
my promotion till you see how I acquit myself; and now I 
must tune the instrument." 

" I do not think Mr. Devereux was a first-rate performer, 
so I should not wonder if we have gained by the change. I 
hope you have observed my butterfly," she continued, point- 
ing to her uncle's present, which she wore ; "it has had two 
admirers already, the toady and Lady Mordaunt." Emma, 
of course, could not be rude to her uncle under present 
circumstances, but, in point of fact, her feelings were con- 
siderably softened towards him. Her dislike had proceeded 
mainly from the mortification he inflicted on her pride, and 
still more from that which she was continually dreading that 
2f 2 



436 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

he might inflict ; but now other thoughts were uppermost, 
and she cared less about the world's opinion of Uncle John. 
Nothing, moreover, could be better than getting him 
installed at this instrument, where no one need know — at 
least, not the company in general — that he was her relative ; 
and, if he played pretty well, he might pass for a paid 
musician. So he was at once utilized and shelved. "Where 
is Mama 1 " she said. " Did you hear that about M. Pattin, 
Gertrude ! I am afraid she will be quite heart-broken." 

" She is in the card-room," replied Gertrude. 

The card-room was a small subsidiary drawing-room facing 
the landing-place, and over Uncle John's usual bed-room, 
but it was somewhat larger than that apartment, for it 
extended also over some additional space occupied by a china 
closet on the ground floor. This room, opening at the side 
by a door into the back drawing-room, was usually considered 
as Mrs. Wyndham's private sitting-room. It was now to 
be allotted for the card-players, as they would thus be 
removed sufficiently far from the singing ; whist-players 
disliking distracting noise close to their ears. The dancing 
would not begin until later, when the cards would be nearly 
over. Sir Philip never stayed late. He was careful of his 
health, and liked to get to bed betimes. Here Emma found 
her mother, with Lady Mordaunt and Mrs. Abinger, the 
latter having just arrived ; so she had no opportunity of 
administering any consolation without being overheard. 
Mrs. Wyndham was behaving with a fortitude worthy of a 
better cause, and, if her daughter might detect the smothered 
look of care, her guests, at least, had no suspicion of the cor- 
roding grief which lay at her heart. The gentlemen soon 
came up, and the company began to arrive. Being Saturday 
night, an early hour had been mentioned in the cards of 
invitation, and the whist-players were at once set to work or, 
rather, to play ; but with Mr. Abinger and Lady Mordaunt 
it was work, very serious though pleasurable work. 



THE CONCERT AND THE DANCE. 437 

" I thought you would be better here, though the room 
is small," said Mrs. Wyndham, " being further removed 
from the instruments ; the singing might have disturbed 
you in the front room." 

" We are better because, not though, the room is small," 
said Lady Mordaunt, " for this keeps the world out. I say 
we are very snug here — quite in heaven ; what do you say, 
Sir Philip?" 

" I never was in heaven, so cannot compare," replied 
her enemy. " We are snug, however — very. Is heaven 
snug ? You seem to know something about it." 

" The card-table is Lady Mordaunt's paradise," said Mr. 
Abinger ; " we all know that." 

" When she wins," observed Sir Philip. 

"I should think," said Mrs. Abinger's friend, another 
dowager, "that it is a very bad arrangement, playing 
against your husband. You never can gain ; it is out of 
one hand into the other." 

" I won't have the dowager for my partner," said Sir 
Philip emphatically. 

"We manage these matters by playing alternately," 
replied Mr. Abinger, " when we cannot make up two 
rubbers, which I dare say we shall by-and-by. In the 
meantime Mr. Poole takes the other hand." 

" Of course Mr. Poole was ready to do anything he was 
desired. It was the tenure by which he held his post. 

Leaving these uninteresting individuals to their amuse- 
ment, we will return with Emma to the drawing-room. 
The Vincent party had arrived, and others were streaming 
up the stairs every moment. 

"We must begin our singing," said Minny, "before 
there is a crowd to choke our voices." 

Emma agreed, and they threw oflf with a trio, in which 
she and Julia bore their part with William Vincent, but 
poor Emma could not join with her usual spii'it. She sang. 



438 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

she talked, she smiled, but her eye wandered occasionally 
about the room uneasily. Mr. Jardine had come up with 
the rest, but had made no attempt to speak to her, nor, 
in fact, had come near her. There would have been no 
use in his doing so ; of course there could be no opportunity 
for a private word at present ; nor, indeed, until the 
dancing should begin. It was only prudent for him, there- 
fore, to keep at a distance and make no parade of intimacy ; 
for her brother Algernon was in the room, and, although he 
seemed to be paying no particular attention to his sister's 
proceedings, she knew that his eye would be on her, and on 
Baines's dear friend also. 

Uncle John's successes were to be numerous that evening. 
He and Will Vincent got into talk together, and by-and- 
by they favoured the company with a duet, in which 
Uncle John's voice was by no means the worst of the two. 
In fact, he had a very good voice, one of those full-toned 
mellow voices which go to the heart. Julia was in ecstasies. 
She was a regular fanatica for music, and, if Uncle John 
had been twice as unpolished as he was, it would have gone 
for nothing in her eyes. As it was, she made so much of 
him that Emma began to think that, by some curious freak 
of fortune, her despised uncle was going to turn into the 
hero of the evening. 

" When a man has a really good voice," said the delighted 
Julia, " it beats a woman's all to nothing." 

" I cannot agree with you there," said Algernon. 

" I am sure T am right. It has a pathetic element in it 
which a woman's voice lacks. Our voices are more like 
instruments, bird-like. A man's voice has so much more 
heart in it and tenderness ; it speaks. I am sure your dear 
uncle would give us a solo. Emma, do ask him. We had 
a bravura song last ; we must vary ; this next should be 
something soft and plaintive, like a serenade or a barcarole; 
you know what I mean. Willy was going to give us 



THE CONCERT AND THE DANCE. 439 

something with his guitar accomjDaniment, but that can be 
later." 

So the " dear uncle " was asked, and sang some Sicilian 
ballads which he had picked up from the peasantry and the 
fishermen. Taking up young Vincent's guitar, he impro- 
vised a slight but very sweet accompaniment to his voice, 
and, when he laid down the instrument, it was amidst the 
universal applause of the room. Truly Uncle John was a 
success that evening. Julia Yincent was in raptures, and 
told him that she wished he was her uucle; in return for 
which polite speech John Sanders made his best bow. 

" I will not give him away," said Gertrude. 

" I must dance part of the evening," whispered Emma 
to her sister ; " so we three must exchange places at the 
pianoforte. Julia does not care to dance. She will devote 
herself to the harp." 

" I am very nervous except in a duet," replied Gertrude. 
" I was in hopes you would not want me." 

" But, you see, I cannot remain stuck here all night," 
said Emma. " Fanny Elliot said she would help till 
M. Dubois came, but I do not see her yet, and Minny is 
going to dance ; " and again her eye wandered about, but il 
was after another person. 

Fanny Elliot, fortunately for poor Gertrude's nerves, 
made her appearance shortly, and Emma, after playing the 
first quadrille and waltz, was set free for the present. The 
violoncello had done its part well. "You keep time so 
admirably," said Julia ; " that is everything, when playing 
in concert." 

'' Better a wrong note than a hair's breadth out of time," 
replied Sanders. " Come, let us fire off again." 

'' My dear Mr. Sanders," said Minny, who was now at 
the piano, " you are too enthusiastic ; you must let the 
dancers breathe and our fingers rest a little." 

Meanwhile Emma had been dancing with LordTyndrum. 



440 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

He was as marked as ever in his attentions, but the youug 
lady was tired of him now, and was thinking of something 
else. She hoped he would not stick too close to her ; it 
might be inconvenient ; and the process of chilling off, 
which she frequently practised upon her admirers when it 
no longer amused her to prolong a flirtation, had begun. 
But Mr. Jardine had disappeared. She could make nothing 
of this proceeding ; he had gone without exchanging or 
attempting to exchange a word with her. That gentleman, 
however, had done a very wise thing. He knew that 
Algernon Wyndham's eye must be upon him, and, over- 
hearing him make some allusion to another party in the 
neighbourhood, where perhaps he should look in before the 
night was over, Mr. Jardine, who was behind him when he 
caught these words, immediately turned, wandered towards 
the door, then slipped downstairs, and was out of the house 
in a moment. He knew the direction Algernon would 
take, as the party was in Albemarle Street, so he went to 
the other side of the Square, beyond Lansdowne House, 
and walked up and down so as to command a view of Hay 
Hill. What he had expected occurred. Algernon shortly 
took his departure ; and no sooner had Mr. Jardine seen 
the spy on his actions fairly ofi' than he returned to the 
house, and it was not long before he was waltzing with 
Miss "Wyndham. He had a good deal to communicate, and 
it had to be done in very piecemeal fashion, when they 
paused occasionally for a few moments to take breath. It 
is neither easy nor comfortable to tell or hear secrets in a 
crowd of people who know you, particularly distressing 
secrets, as were those which had to be imparted ; but 
Jardine's face was inexpressive, and Emma had considerable 
self-command when the effort was necessary. 

It may be as well to state first how much was true and 
how much was false with reference to this affair. Mr. 
Baines of Tetherby Hall was Captain Baines's uncle, but, 



THE CONCERT AKD THE DANCE, 441 

SO far from having intended to make him his heir, he had 
never asked him inside his doors for several years. Of 
course there had been no telegi'am, but the gentleman, as it 
happened, did die suddenly of apoplexy the following week. 
It was quite true, also, that the nephew mentioned in the 
papers, whose name Emma had never heard before, was the 
expected heir. The substance of Mr. Jardine's information 
was to this effect — that Captain Baines had found his 
uncle better than he exjjected ; he had been sent for in 
order to sign some necessary papers, and, when this was 
done, he had had a good deal of confidential conversation 
with his relative ; and this led to an avowal which had 
displeased the old gentleman. " Perhaps," said Mr. Jardine, 
" I need scarcely say what that avowal was. My friend 
thought it right and sincere to make it, but, as it seems, it 
w^as ati imprudence on his part. He is too frank by half. 
There was no quarrel, however, nor was there the remotest 
ground for a quarrel. The old gentleman was simply out 
of humour ; I verily believe, merely because he found that 
he was not the sole object of interest to his nephew. He 
was very selfish, as old bachelors are apt to be." Mr. Jar- 
dine proceeded to inform his partner that his friend had 
committed a still worse piece of imprudence. He had left 
his uncle for a day and run up to London ; and he took care 
to let Emma know that she was the cause. He was so 
desirous to see her or communicate w4th her, if possible, on 
account of the evil report of him which he knew she had 
received. 

When he had arrived at this point, Emma suggested a 
few more turns. They were close to the disconsolate Tyn- 
drum, who had his eye fixed upon her. They stopped on 
the other side the room, and then Mr. Jardine completed 
his story. The uncle was seized with an attack of pai^lysis 
while Frederick Baines was away ; it was quite unexpected, 
but the old gentleman had resented his absence, as if it had 



442 THE WY^DHAM FAMILY. 

been an intentional neglect ; and then the other nephew, 
he of Hammerbridge, had come over. The enfeebleuient 
of Mr. Baines's mind had made him peculiarly liable to 
receive false impressions. The one nephew was away, he 
who considered himself as sure of the inheritance, while 
the other nephew, who did not reckon that he had a chance, 
was there to pay the most respectful and assiduous atten- 
tions. Of course the most was made of this circumstance, 
and of the opportunity so unfortunately afforded, especially 
by a sister of Randall Baines who had accompanied him. 
She had so worked on her uncle's feelings, who was not in 
a state of mind to form a fair judgment, as to induce him 
to make a fresh will in favour of her brother. " The will 
cannot, of course, be opened till the funeral," said Jar dine, 
" but an attached servant in the house has told Frederick 
that he knows for certain that his master had made 
this new disposition of his property. Frederick does not 
doubt the correctness of the information, and his hopes of 
happiness therefore, as he told me, are, or will be, buried 
in his uncle's grave. T have been charged with a letter for 
you, in which he details all. He will be at the funeral on 
Monday, but will be back in town immediately. He is 
very desirous for a parting interview with you, and 
begged me, if possible, to arrange one. You will not 
refuse him 1 " 

"A parting interview?" said Emma, who was sorely 
embarrassed M'hat to say, for she hardly knew Iiow far it 
was compatible with her dignity to treat Jardine as one 
who was wholly in the secret. 

He perceived her hesitation, and thought it wise to break 
through all difficulties on this head. '' I am sure," he said, 
" you will excuse me, Miss Wyndham, for waiving all 
reserve at such a time, and for confessing that I am aware 
of my friend's deep attachment to you, and that I also know 
that he has made a declaration of his feelings. It was with 



THE CONCERT AXD THE DANCE. 443 

teal's in his eyes that he told me but to-day that, could he 
have foreseen what has now occurred, his secret should 
have remained for ever concealed in his own bosom. All he 
can do now is to throw himself at your feet and beg your 
forgiveness, and then bid you a long farewell." 

" There is nothing whioh needs forgiveness," said Emma ; 
" surely Captain Baines does not do me the injustice of 
supposing me to be mercenary." 

" I am sure he reckons you an angel upon earth, but you 
will read this letter and see what he says. I must own 
that I think my friend somewhat hasty and hand-over-head. 
He is going to sail in a fortnight's time for South America, 
to take service for the Argentine Republic, and get himself 
killed, of course." 

" The Argentine Republic ?" 

" Yes, it is at war, or going to war, with some other 
Republic. I forget which ; they are always squabbling." 

" What madness ! " 

" So say I ; particularly as I believe that he has an 
influential friend, Lord Selden I mean, who could do some- 
thing for him at once ; that is, however, in the event of his 
being married." 

" Why only on that condition 1 " asked Emma. 

" It is no condition of Lord Selden's. The situation which 
he could procure for Baines is that of English consul at 
Hamburg, with a very good salary attached ; but these 
honest Hamburgei-s insist on having a married man. The 
last consul, I believe, was rather a loose fish, and I suppose 
they, in their wisdom, imputed this to his celibate state. 
But I must give you Baines's letter." 

It was not so easy to do this unobserved ; but the 
manoeuvre was effected at last, while the partners stepped 
for a moment into the balcony, which was full of flowers. 

" I shall have no opportunity for reading it until these 
people are all gone," said Emma. 



444 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

" But you will answer it, and I may tell him you will 
see him — may I not 1 " 

" If it could be arranged." 

" We will arrange it all," replied Jardine, " if you will 
only write him a line directed to his lodgings in Piccadilly 
— your maid could post it ; and in the meantime, what 
shall I say ? " 

" Tell him — tell him — not to think of going to America. 
It is madness." Jardine now left her, and went to ask 
Gertrude to dance. 

Here was poor Emma, then, with two confidants forced 
upon her ; an ignorant and forward maid-servant, and a 
gentleman with whom she had really the very slightest 
kind of acquaintance. It was mortifying, but seemed, as 
she thought, unavoidable, and to have come about through 
no fault of her own. The fear of losing her lover absorbed 
her mind, nevertheless, too much for her to spend her time 
in deploring these annoying accessories. She was unable 
to read her letter immediately, even after she had retired 
to her room. Gertrude talked to her, and she answered 
mechanically, as one in a dream, with her hand always 
reverting to the precious letter in her pocket. Then they 
both undressed. Rachel had been dismissed, but still there 
was no unobserved opportunity. At last Emma was driven 
(as she viewed the matter) to read her lover's letter while 
on her knees and pretending to say her prayers. This 
irreverent act, it is fair to say, went against the grain with 
the poor girl — but how many other things had gone sorely 
against the grain ! One thing had appeared to necessitate, 
another, and let her down lower and lower — lower than she 
could have conceived it possible ; and she was to sink yet 
lower still. It is always so when we take a wrong step. 
We do not know whither we are going. Hazael, said, " Is 
thy servant a dog that he should do these things 1 " 

The Captain's letter did not substantially contain more 



THE CONCERT AND THE DANCE. 445 

than Emma already knew, only it was couched in a more 
impassioned and effective style than had been Mr. Jardine's 
abstract. There were the most solemn protestations that 
never, never, would he have avowed his love, or sought to 
win her affections, had he known that he should be well- 
nigh a penniless man. He would have died sooner, and let 
his secret perish with him ; and now all that remained for 
him to do was to die, and so on. But he implored her to 
see him ; he had that to say which he did not wish to leave 
unsaid, and could not trust to a letter. He must part from 
her with the assurance that his fair fame would never suffer 
in her estimation ; for this indeed would be worse than 
death, that his Emma — he must call her so for the last 
time — should ever have to blush for having accepted his 
love. 

Emma would have sobbed over this pathetic production, 
but, conscious that she would attract Gertrude's attention, 
she suppressed all audible demonstrations of emotion, wiped 
her eyes, and then wondered why Captain Baines should be 
so penniless a man, since he once told her he had a com- 
petence independently of his expectations. And must it not 
be so, since there was the cab and the tiger '? It was but a 
way of speaking. No, she was not mercenary ; he should 
learn that. Was there not the resource, under the worst 
circumstances, of the cottage with the jessamine porch? 
So Emma got into bed, and lay awake half the remaining 
hours — not of night, for the day was already dawning, but 
the hours which were allotted to sleep, writing her answer 
ready in imagination. 



446 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

CHAPTER XXXVII. 

FAMILY JARS. 

IMr. Wyndham was very angry with his wife. He had 
never, since they two had been joined in holy matrimony, 
been so irate, except perhaps on the last occasion on which 
he had paid his son's debts, when the fond mother had 
attempted to frame some excuses for her darling. Mrs. 
Wyndham knew he was angry, and that he must have his 
say out — the sooner the better. So, instead of making her 
escape, she lingered on in the drawing-room after the com- 
])any had departed, while the lights were being extinguished 
by James. Her husband, who seemed to grudge their 
burning one minute longer than they were wanted, or 
hated the sight of them as recalling the detestable party, 
now more than ever detestable since the dinner had been 
a failure, had rung for the man at once, and remained super- 
intending the process. When the sleepy footman had 
finished and gone, Mrs. Wyndham recalled her husband, 
who was leaving the room. She was sure that the sooner 
he spoke out the more angrily he would express himself, 
and it was her policy to give him the opportunity, because 
she knew him well enough to be aware that the more he 
gave way to his temper, the greater would be the reaction 
in her favour. 

Mrs. Wyndham was a woman wise in her generation, 
and had never been known to be out of temper with her 
husband. This gives a wife a great advantage, which few 
have the wisdom to secure ; so I repeat it, — Mrs. Wynd- 
ham was a wise woman in her way. " Percy," she said 
'' I am so very sorry at this unfortunate mistake about the 
cook. I depended on Mrs. Bamber, and she assured me he 
could send up a good dinner. I have felt it quite difficult 



FAMILY JARS. 447 

to keep up my spirits while people were here ; I have been 
so vexed on your account." 

" Your vexation, Beatrice, will not mend matters," said 
her husband. " I dare say you are vexed now — I am more 
than vexed, I can tell you — but had you cared as much as 
you affect to do about my wishes, you would, and you 
could, I am certain, have secured a good cook. You say 
you depended on Mrs. Bamber. Did she say this fellow 
was a first-rate cook ? If so, the woman ought to be pro- 
secuted for — for—" he was going to say libel, but he 
remembered that a libel must be injurious to reputation — 
so he concluded " she ought to be branded as a pernicious 
liar. Did she say that this Pattin was the best man she 
knew of ? If she did, I will never deal with her again." 

" No, Percy," replied his wife, thus interrogated ; " there 
certainly was another whom she mentioned as being at the 
top of the tree and employed by great houses." 

" And pray, why did you not take him, if he was dis- 
engaged 1 " 

" His charge was enormous, and I thought that this might 
be greatly owing to the mere fact of his being the fashion, 
so that we should be positively throwing away money. A 
very good character was given of this man, who, I con- 
cluded, only wanted a name to be fully equal to the other." 
'• You thought, you concluded, but, you see, you thought 
and concluded wrongly ; had you attended to my strongly 
expressed wishes, you would have grudged nothing to 
secure the best cook you could get. / should have grudged 
nothing, and, at any rate, should never have complained of 
you, however high the charge ; you would have done your 
part. As it is, you have not done your part, and I can 
never trust you again." 

" I do my best," said his wife, " to keep things together ; 
I endeavour to consult appearances and, in particular, your 
wishes on this head, while I strive to keep down the bills. 



448 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

You know yourself how high you always reckon them to be, 
for all my endeavours." 

This was not a wise remark. " Now, Beatrice," said her 
husband, " I w^ill tell you what it is : you like to spend on 
what you and the girls fancy — these foolish, useless balls 
and parties ; while what I like, namely, a well-appointed 
house and table, is sacrificed to this object." 

"If the girls go out in the world, we must repay civi- 
lities," replied Mrs. Wyndham ; " and if they do not, how 
are they ever to have a chance of marrying 1 You wish them 
to marry, do you not, Percy "?" 

" If they marry well I shall be glad, but I should just like 
to know, is there any prospect of this as yet ? Emma has been 
dancing about these three years, and I hear of this and that 
partner, but no proposal. Meanwhile I pay. I don't want 
to get rid of my girls at all ; and, certainly, if they make 
poor matches, I shall heartily wish they had not had the 
opportunity. No, this is all nonsense. You women love these 
frivolities, I hate the whole thing ; but you bother me into 
consenting, and, after that, will not so much as allow me 
in my own house to set a creditable dinner before a few 
friends." 

Then Mrs. "Wyndham burst out crying. She was not 
usually lacrymose, and Mr. Wyndham, like most men, could 
not bear women's tears. " Oh, if you are going to take it 
that way, I shall go to bed ; " and he turned towards the 
door. 

" It is time to go to bed anyhow, Percy," said his wife, 
applying her pocket handkerchief to her eyes. 

I believe no more was said about M. Pattin, but Mrs. 
Wyndham had so far gained her object, that her husband 
afterwards thought he had overdone his wrath, and been 
harsh. Mrs. Wyndham, when she saw the next morning 
that he was pacified, and spoke quite gently to her, as one 
who had reason to apologize rather than find fault, took 



FAMILY JARS. 449 

care not to reopen the question. Reconciliations may be 
very fine things once or twice, and seem to clear the atmo- 
sphere, but they lose their effect by repetition, and become 
wearisome. Men, at least, weary of them, for they do not 
usually like scenes. Mrs. Wyndham knew that her Percy, 
in particular, greatly disliked scenes ; so she was satisfied 
with results, without seeking to hear any retractation of un- 
kind speeches, and all went on as if nothing had occurred. 
I think, on the whole, she had rather gained by the trans- 
action. 

The next morning was one of hurry ; breakfast had to 
be dispatched earlier than it would otherwise, on account 
of getting to Mass. Sanders had gone early, notwithstand- 
ing the late hour at which he had retired, and Tyrell had 
seen that he had breakfast on his return ; so he had finished 
before the mother and daughters came dowm. It was not a 
comfortable breakfast. Gertrude had been crying, having 
just learnt that Tyrell was leaving ; and then Mrs. Wynd- 
ham had to disclose the plan of going into Kent for ten 
days to see Larly Ellerton. It was a terrible blow to Emma; 
and her mothar knew that it would be so. She dealt 
the blow, however, with much less reluctance than might 
have been expected, for she was ill pleased with her daughter 
— a state of mind which blunts compassion. Emma, after 
flirting all night with Lord Tyndrum at the ball to which 
they had gone on Thursday, had been barely civil to him 
at her own house on the following Saturday. She had 
danced with him, it is true, but had scarcely vouchsafed a 
word to him. This Mrs. Wyndham knew, for she had 
watched them ; and that Emma had, moreover, avoided 
him afterwards her mother felt certain, for from time to 
time she had seen the tall Scotchman threading his way 
about the rooms in a purposeless manner, or standing gazing 
at something with an uncomfortable expression on his face. 
Once, when she noticed his eye fixed in this way, she moved 

2g 



450 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

forward to observe wliat had attracted his attention, and 
then she saw her daughter and the " black-leg," who were 
partners in the waltz, engaged in close conversation. This 
was enough, it must be allowed, to put Mrs. Wyndham 
considerably out of sorts. She felt sick of the whole thing. 
This was the game Emma was always playing, and she was 
inclined to think that there was, after all, some truth in 
what her husband had said — that all this going out was 
perhaps only furnishing her daughters with the opportunity 
of making bad matches. With her husband Mrs. Wynd- 
ham was not out of humour, though he had spoken hard 
things, but with her daughter Emma, who had said nothing 
at all, she was exceedingly out of humour ; and so she felt 
the less pity for her. 

"To visit Lady Ellerton, and spend ten days at Gorsham !" 
exclaimed Emma ; " and just at this time, too, and with 
three balls next week ! " 

" That cannot be helped," said her mother ; " as for 
me, I shall not be sorry for a little rest. I have not got 
Lady EUerton's answer yet, but I have no doubt she will 
be glad to have us." 

Lady Ellerton was the widow of an East Indian judge, 
and an old friend of the " Nabob," Mrs. Wyndham's uncle. 
She had once been a beauty and a wit, but of the beajuty 
nothing remained save a wreck, and of the wit, only a 
sharp and satirical tongue. She was now, in short, a very 
crabbed old woman, disliking old age particularly, and 
grumbling continually. Mrs. Wyndham, however, did not 
neglect old friends ; partly from prudence, and partly from 
a certain amount of good feeling and grateful remembrance of 
former kindness. In this she was by no means altogether defi- 
cient. Her treatment of her own kith and kin, it is true, 
appeared to form an exception, but then she had been early 
removed from her family, and had never really cared for her 
brothers and sisters. She had known them since only as a 



FAMILY JARS. 451 

mortification to her pride. So Mrs. Wyndliam was atten. 
tive to old Lady EUerton, tiresome as she was, and often 
paid her long visits, when in London, to Emma's great 
annoyance ; and now they were to spend ten days at Gorsham. 

*' And why did you never say a word of tliis. Mama?" 
asked Emma, in an angry and injured tone, as if almost 
calling her mother to account. "To go and make this offer, 
and not so much as to tell me ! " 

" I suppose I was hardly bound to consult you, Emma," 
replied her mother sharply. "Your father wished us to pay 
this visit, and your likings and dislikings could not have 
made any difference ; I had no choice in the matter, although, 
I presume, I have a right to a choice, without asking my 
children's permission." 

" Emma does not mean that, Mama," said Gerti-ude, 
interposing ; " only she is disappointed, and vexed also 
that you should write without telling her you were 
doing so." 

"You have only to look at your sister's face at this 
moment," replied Mrs. Wyndham, " to understand why I 
put off letting her know until yesterday evening had been 
got over." 

" I am treated like a baby ! " said Emma. 

" My dear Emma, I wish you would not act like one," 
said her mother. " Do you expect to get through life with 
everything your own way 1 You know very well that 
Parliament is probably about to be dissolved, and, if so, your 
father will have to go down to ^^^littlebury." 

" But they say now that it will not be dissolved ; and, 
supposing it is, we shall not be wanted at Whittlebury, I 
imagine. We never go out of town till late in August." 

" The election will entail much expense, and your father 

dislikes burning the candle at both ends. We are parting 

with two servants now, and it would be better, in that 

case, not to be in a hurry to replace them, but to rest 

2g 2 



452 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

on our oars until we see what is done. A week will 
show." 

" I settled for that girl to come on Wednesday," said 
Emma. 

" I spoke to Miss Yiucent myself last night." replied her 
mother, " and put her off. I said I should not know for 
another wee k whether we wanted her. Minny replied that 
the delay did not signify, for, now that her cousin was so ill 
in the house, they could not receive their expected friend, so 
had a bed still at liberty. And, by-the-by, girls, do not go 
to Cadogan-place ; I have a horror of diphtheria, and it is 
infectious." 

" So even Minny Yincent is told before I am ! " exclaimed 
Emma indignantly. " I think I have cause to complain, 
indeed ! Why am I treated in this cruel way, and no 
regard shown to my feelings 1 " 

" I don't see how it would have made you happier to 
know this a day sooner, Emma. All I can say is, that I wish 
you commonly paid half as much regard to my feelings and 
wishes as I do to yours." 

*' What have I done now 1 " asked Emma haughtily. 

Mrs. Wyndham continued : " I am sick of the whole 
thing. I have to look on at what I do not like, at what you 
know T do not like, and yet cannot venture to speak a word 
without seemg you fly out in this way. It is enough to 
make me wish never to come to town again. To mention 
only one thing : do you suppose it is very pleasant to my 
feelings to see you one evening giving a young man the most 
marked encouragement, and two nights afterwards scarcely 
treating him with common civility 1 1 have to look on, 
seeing you earn the reputation of a flirt, and yet hold 
my tongue. This vexes me cruelly, but you think nothing 
of it.". 

" Do you mean that foolish, raw-boned Scotchman, Mama 1 
Surely you cannot make out a case against me because I did 



FAMILY JARS. 453 

not devote myself to him at our own party, when there was 
so much lor me to look after. Besides, I hear he is rich 
It is because I am not a flirt that I do not choose to encou- 
rage a gentleman whom I certainly should refuse if he asked 
me." 

*' But you might be civil, and not show that you preferred 
auy rubbish to be met with in the room to him ; and that 
after seeming to receive his attentions so favourably only two 
nights previous." 

"I did not know you asked rubbish to your house, 
Mama," said Emma, who knew very well who was meant 
by the " rubbish." I think Mi^. Wyndham had better not 
have alluded either to Lord Tyndrum or the " rubbish." 

Then the paterfamilias entered, and the discussion was 
dropped. Mrs. Wyndham had only smiles for him; her 
vexation had all been wreaked on Emma. He, on his part, 
was very mild aud bland. " Yes, my love, I will have 
chocolate," he said. " It suits me best when I breakfast 
late. AVhere is John? He was really everything to us 
yesterday evening. Eagle called him a * brick/ which means 
a good deal with him." 

"■ And before Sir Philip went," added his wife, " he said 
that he had spent a very pleasant evening, and begged me 
to tell my brother — John was at the piano singing — that he 
would certainly pay him a visit in Sicily." 

No two people could have been more comfortable together 
than were the husband and wife, and no one would have 
suspected the hrise of the previous evening. 

" You had better get your things on," said Mrs. "Wyndham 
to her daughter ; ** you are always longer than I am, and it 
is nearly eleven." 

" It is all a plot," said Emma to her sister, when they 
reached their room, — " an unworthy plot to get me away. 
Why am I to be served so ? Why am I to be treated with 
this mistrust? What have I done to deserve it ? '* 



454 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

" WLafc do you mean by a plot, Emma ? That is absurd. 
You may rely upon it, that it is all a matter of pounds, 
shillings, and pence. Papa arranged it ; he has taken fright 
about expenses." 

'' Then you knew of it ? " 

" No; I never heard a word about it till this morning." 

*'To go and spend ten days at Gorsham, and dine at five 
o'clock, with those horrid long evenings, and old Miss 
Downs, whom I abominate, talking through her nose ! " 
Miss Downs was a maiden sister residing with Lady 
Ellerton. 

*' It is dull, of course, but it is only for ten days." 

" But we shall not come back to town, you may be quite 
Sure," said Emma, "whether Parliament is dissolved or not. 
We shall go on to some stupid seaside place, where there is 
not a soul I care about ; and there we shall sit out glaring 
in the sun and staring at the sea all day long, which I 
detest, with Mama talking of nothing but the weekly bills. 
It is enough to drive one mad. " 

" Come, Emnaa," said her sister, " we shall be late for Mass 
if you do not bustle." 

So Emma had to bustle, and then her mother's voice was 
heard on the stairs calling them, and they all set ofif for 
church. One might have wished them a better preparation. 

"We shall be hardly there before the Gospel," said 
Gertrude ; and then they quickened their pace and not 
another word was said. 

On their return Emma found a private opportunity to 
write her letter, as Uncle John took Gertrude out for a 
walk after luncheon. This letter, of course, contained pro- 
testations of fidelity. She told Baines that she had not 
loved him for the sake of his expected inheritance, and she 
did not love him the less now that he had lost it. They 
could be very happy on moderate means. Then she pro- 
ceeded to state her plan, with which the reader is already 



FAMILY JARS. 455 

acquainted — to wait a year and a month until she was of 
age and her own mistress. Should her parents then offer 
insuperable objections to their union, she would redeem her 
promise in spite of all opposition. She also told him that 
they were leaving London on Thursday for ten days, and 
that she felt very uncertain about then' return. She would 
see him, however, on Tuesday afternoon for a short time, if 
it could be managed. Such was the substance of Emma's 
letter ; and now she had to put her pride in her pocket and 
ask Rachel to post it for her either that evening or early the 
next morninsr. 

Rachel took the letter, but it was for the purpose of 
discharging her commission in a more effective manner. 
She had, in fact, received some private directions from 
Jardine. He had slipped a small piece of paper into her 
hand while she was presenting him with a cup of tea ; and 
on this paper was written — " If a letter is given you to 
post, bring it to JNo. — Piccadilly. Wait, if C. B. is not 
at home." So Rachel took the letter straight to Captain 
Baines's lodgings. It was easy for her to do so, as she had 
the Sunday afternoon at her free disposal. Here she saw 
the interesting Captain himself, and received a most 
flattering reception, accompanied by a douceur of the solid 
order, notwithstanding his professedly penniless state. A 
good deal of conversation took place between the lover and 
his mistress's waiting- woman, which made Rachel feel 
herself quite a personage fit to figure in "genteel comedy"; 
and then Captain Baines wrote a reply, in which he told 
his love that he would call between four and five on the 
Tuesday, if she could remain at home by herself In the 
meantime, as those sad moments would be so brief, he must 
explain, in reply to the proposition she had so nobly made, 
that he was a much poorer man, or probably would be much 
poorer, than hitherto he had been. Of his own he had but 
X200 a year, having hitherto received £300 additional in 



456 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

the form of an allowance from his uncle, which he could 
scarcely expect would be left to him, since he knew that 
his relative had been much irritated against him when he 
was induced to make this new will. As for himself, he 
could not and would not ask her or allow her to share such 
poverty with him. It was true that he had an offer of 
a situation which, had they married now, would have 
placed them in comfortable circumstances, but, as it was 
out of the question to hope that her parents would give ear 
to his proposals, prejudiced as they had been against him, 
and as she was determined not to choose for herself while 
under age, nothing remained for him but to vanish from 
the scene. Would that he had never appeared thereon to 
mar her peace ! Of his own, he would not speak. She 
must learn to forget him, and as for him — here followed 
something about seeking death on the battle-field, and the 
Argentine Republic : that was his great gun ; Jardine had 
told him so, and he did not fail to use it with effect. 

Then Rachel took back the letter, and gave an account 
of her interview. She had thought it best, she told her 
young mistress, to go straight to the Captain's lodgings, 
and thus make sure that he had the letter in time. Jardine's 
directions she ignored altogether, glad to take credit to 
herself for a bright idea and zeal in executing it. " But 
Ma'am," said she, " what a state the Caj^tain is in ! Quite 
like a desperado ! I never see a man in such a state. And 
he is going to America, he said. I am sure you must have 
a heart of stone if you let him go ; and he such a fine man ! 
so noble ! " 

All this vulgar rhodomontade was not without its effect 
on Emma ; she made, however, no direct response, asking 
only how she was to see him. " I should be sorry," she 
said, " if his visit was observed ; just at present, I mean, 
and as matters stand." 

" Of course it must not be observed, but you may trust 



FAMILY JARS. 457 

to me. I told the Captain I would be on the watch, so 
that he need not even ring. I think you had best see him 
in the little drawing-room, because no one is likely to go in 
there ; if anybody comes, you could pop through the door 
into the back drawing-room, and the Captain could slip 
down when the coast was clear." 

These details were rather revolting to Emma, but they 
had to be conveyed, and she had asked for them. If she 
was to receive a clandestine visit from her lover, it was 
imperative that some precautions should be adopted, how- 
ever disagreeable it might be to dwell upon them. Rachel, 
after all, had done her part very well, and the arrangement 
suggested was, under the circumstances, the best that could 
be made. I need scarcely say that Emma's plan of waiting 
until she was of age could not possibly suit the Captain. 
It would be, he doubted not, utterly ruinous to his hopes. 
Emma, he was sure, by some means or other, would soon 
become convinced of his unworthiness. At present, either 
she had not heard the precise character of the charge 
brought against him, or she utterly discredited it ; but, 
siiice no one knew it to be true better than did the Captain 
liimself, he was persuaded that long before a year had 
elapsed his lady-love would have been fully enlightened, 
and would be in quite another mind regarding him. It 
was now or never for him. He must prevail upon her to 
elope with him or give her up altogether. Accordingly he 
had told Rachel without circumlocution, which was not at 
all needed in her case, that it was an elopement which 
must be managed. On this point he spoke out clearly and 
decidedly, but not in the least " like a desperado." 

" He will go to America, as sure as my name is Rachel 
Somers," said the waiting-maid, returning to the charge. 
"To see a fine man like that go otf with a broken heart, to 
get killed, is enough to make one cry;" and Rachel sniffled 
a little, and got out her handkerchief " I know what I 



458 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

would do if I was a young lady," she added, wiping one 
eye, which was quite innocent of a tear, " and I had a fine 
man at my feet like that." 

Emma did not ask what she would do, but she well 
understood what the girl meant. It was the first time 
that the idea of a runaway match had been brought dis- 
tinctly before her mind. Had it indeed come to that 1 



CHAPTER XXXVIII. 

DUPES AND VICTIMS. 

It was arranged that on Tuesday Mrs. Wyndham should 
take her brother into the City, where he had some business 
to transact. On the way home she would do some shopping 
with her girls ; a few preparations were needed before they 
left London. 

But one girl did not choose to go ; as she had no longer 
the excuse of the practising for the party, Emma pleaded a 
headache. ^'Tlie crowd in the City will drive me crazy," 
she said ; " and I am not up to shopping. Gertrude knows 
what I want." So Emma was indulged, and the more 
readily as to Mrs. Wyndham her youngest daughter was 
at present the most acceptable companion. Gertrude was 
never ill-humoured and never complained, although she was 
rather sad on this occasion at the prospect of bidding fare- 
well to her uncle and at Tyrell's impending departure. 

On the same day another inmate of the house went into the 
City ; only she went in an omnibus, not in the carriage. This 
was Mary Tidman. She had cried a good deal when she 
first received warning, particularly as only a week was left 
for her to look out for another London situation ; but Tyrell 



DUPES AND VICTIMS. 459 

had succeeded in persuading her that to return to the 
country was, any way, the wisest thing she could do. 
Mary's family lived on the skirts of a small country towTi ; 
they were respectable people, and well known to their 
neighbours. Mary had kind friends there, and in particular 
the priest, who was sure to interest himself in her behalf. 
Doubtless she would easily find a place, and Mrs. Wyndhara 
would, of course, give her a character. So Mary dried her 
tears. There was nothing much to regret in her present 
situation, since her friend, Mrs. Tyrell, was leaving also. 
Rachel she disliked, and Hachel disliked her; and even 
James, with whom she was friendly and confidential, was 
and could be nothing more, for she was aware that he had 
a "young woman " of his own with whom he was ''keeping 
company," and with whom he regularly took a walk every 
Sunday evening. After all, she would not be sorry to 
return to the country. 

But what took Mary into the City 1 She went to the 
savings' bank, to draw three-pound-ten, which, by the help 
of Tyrell's good advice and kind offices, she had been able 
to deposit there. Tyrell had helped the girl to make her 
gowns at home, had cut them out for her, had encouraged 
her to be economical, and to mend and darn small holes 
before they became large ones. She had also taught her to 
save up her best clothes, never to wear them while at her 
work, and to dispense with what she did not absolutely 
require. Without this motherly superintendence, poor 
Mary would probably have left her place without having 
saved five shillings out of her wages. Now she had three- 
pound-ten in her pocket, or believed she had, when she came 
home from her expedition. " Here it is, Mrs. Tyrell, and 
a few shillings' interest besides," she said triumphantly, as 
she fumbled after her purse. Presently she got very red 
and proceeded hastily to extract the whole contents of her 
pocket ; after which she turned it inside out and looked 



460 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

aghast. '' It is gone ! " she cried : then the poor girl threw 
herself on one of the kitchen chairs and burst into tears. 
Mrs. Tyrell could not at first pacify her sufficiently to 
extract any account of where she had been since she received 
her money. " I have been nowhere/' she sobbed out at last, 
" only in the 'bus. I haven't been to no shop, nor even taken 
out my purse since I put it in my pocket at the bank." 

<•' Were there many people in the omnibus 1 " 

" Yes, it was nearly full most of the way. People got in 
and out." 

" Who was next you 1 " 

" A very civil gentleman. It couldn't be him ; he was 
A'ery civil, and talked a good bit to me quite polite, and 
opened the window for me, for it was stiflicating, the 'bus 
was. There was a woman on the t'other side, but it couldn't 
well be her, for she'd her arms full of a babby. Besides, my 
pocket wasn't on that side." 

" Did you talk to her at all 1 " 

" I noticed the babby once." 

'^ And there was this gentleman on the other side of you, 
and next your pocket 1 " 

" But, Mrs. Tyrell, he was quite a gentleman. Bless 
you, he had as good a coat on as Mr. Algernon wears ! " 

" The coat does not make the gentleman, nor the honest 
man either. But I do not say he took your purse. Was 
the omnibus crowded when you got out 1 Had you to 
squeeze past a good many 1 " 

" No, there was very few then. That gentleman got out 
at Kegent-street, and a lot more passengers besides. There 
was no squeezing when I got out, and I gathered my 
petticoats round me. O dear ! O dear ! what am I to do ? 
I shall go home with scarce a sixpence in my pocket when 
I've paid my fare ; " and Mary's tears flowed afresh. 

Mrs. Tyrell pitied her from her heart ; she went away 
for a moment and, then speedily returning, placed three 



DUPES AND VICTIMS. 461 

sovereigns and ten shillings in Mary's hand. " That will 
make up your lost sum," she said. 

" No, no, Mrs. Tyrell, I cannot ; indeed I cannot ; it is 
too much ; I know yon are not rich." 

" I am as rich as I wish to be," replied Tyrell, who would 
not hear of taking the money back either in whole or in part. 
Had Mary known that the bestowal of this gift left the 
donor with just one pound and eighteenpence in the world, 
and that, unlike her, she had no home to which she could 
return, she would certainly not have accepted it ; as it was, 
she was very thankful, and was aware that the sacrifice 
must be great, although she was ignorant of its extent. 
She at first insisted on considering the money as a loan, 
which she was to repay when able. 

" No, Mary," said her friend, " that, indeed, would be a 
very poor kindness. This debt would hang about you as a 
weight, and would either prove a serious inconvenience to 
you or become a burden on your conscience. No, there 
must be no debt." 

" What can I say 1 What can I do ?" exclaimed Mary. 

" Say nothing, my good girl, but I will tell you what you 
can do." 

" What is it, Mrs. Tyrell ? There is nothing I would not 
do to please you, and show you that I am not ungrateful." 

" Keep, then, in mind the advice I have given you ; it 
is worth incomparably more than those few coins ; and, if 
you will do this, I shall feel repaid more than a thousand- 
fold. Love God and obey His commandments ; do not be 
satisfied with trying to escape hell, but seek to do His will 
in all things. Let that be your first object — not to get a 
comfortable place, or a kind mistress, or to win the good 
opinion of those about you, or to avoid annoyances. Don't 
be always dreading blame, or fancying that extra work is 
going to be laid upon you, or fretting at the imperfect 
tempers of those about you. It may seem reasonable to 



462 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

think a good deal of all these things, but it is of no use, 
and all this hoping and fearing keeps God out of our 
thoughts. My dear Mary, we shall never know true peace 
or rest till we brush all these anxieties away and seek God 
alone." Then she kissed Mary, who shed a few more tears 
and promised she would try to do better. 

Mrs. Wyndham took her brother into the City, as she 
had proposed, accompanied by Gertrude. " It seems like 
coming to the end, John," she observed. 

" It does indeed ; when one begins to make preparations 
one feels already half on the go." Then Sanders repeated 
in a more serious manner his proposal that Gertrude should 
return with him, and get the benefit of a Sicilian climate 
during the winter. 

"You are very kind, John, I am sure, but her father, I 
know, would not part with her for so long, or allow her to 
go to such a distance from us, even if I could make up 
my mind." 

Her father's objections, it will be remembered, had been 
put forward on the previous occasion, but it must be owned 
that the refusal was now made in a different temper. Mrs. 
"Wyndham, although not prepared to accede, did not feel 
the repulsion to the very idea which she had experienced 
the first time it had been broached. Ever since Sir Philip 
had vouchsafed to call her brother a "brick," and had twice 
declared his intention of paying him a visit, a change of 
sentiment had come over her. The Yincents, too, girls of 
as much refinement as her own, had been unaffectedly 
pleased with this homely brother of hers ; neither did it 
count for nothing in the value she had begun to set upon 
him, that he was the possessor of two villas, one of which 
he had himself built, and a couple of large vineyards. 
When people become men of substance, and have a conse- 
quent position in public estimation, their defects and short- 
comings assume a different character in the eyes of a large 



DUPES AND VICTIMS. 463 

class of persons ; and to this class Mrs. Wyndham certainly 
belonged. 

After this she talked of their own plans, of the coming 
election, and the desirability of retrenchment. " I shall not 
take the carriage to the seaside," she said; ''as the horses 
are job ones, we shall save all the stable expenses while 
we are away ; and I shall leave the coachman and his wife 
in charge of the house. Bowles wants a holiday to see his 
friends ; Roper goes with us ; and Rachel and James will 
follow us to the seaside ; the others are leaving." 

" Then, of course, you will not be in London when I 
come back from the north at the end of August ? " 

" Certainly not then ; we shall probably be at Dover, 
where we shall take a small house ; but you can visit us 
there on your way equally well." 

Gertrude listened in silence to these details, and thought 
that Emma was right in her conviction that there was no 
real intention on her mother's part to return to London at 
all after the visit to Gorsham, although she might not see 
good to announce the unwelcome truth at once. Yet 
Gertrude did not suspect any plot in arrangements which 
could be easily accounted for on financial grounds. Emma's 
temper was also reason enough for concealment. Perhaps 
— indeed there could be little doubt — her mother was glad 
of this opportunity to keep her out of Captain Raines's 
way, but the removal had not, she was sure, been planned 
on that account ; the notion had its origin in Emma's 
excited brain. 

"While the poor unsuspecting mother was talking over 
her domestic arrangements and, after depositing her brother, 
was engaged in shopping with her youngest daughter, the 
elder was holding her clandestine interview with her lover. 
He had watched for the departure of the carriage, and 
Ptachel, as soon as it drove off, had been on the look-out 
for him. As she discerned him approaching from her 



464 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

station at one of the bedroom windows, she slipped down 
quietly to the hall-door, having taken the precaution pre- 
viously of putting on her oldest and most noiseless shoes. 
She admitted him without a word, and then, leaving him 
to find his way up-stairs — he already knew where he was 
to find his lady-love — she went below to make a talk and 
distract attention from any casual sound, keeping a special 
watch over Mrs. Roper's movements, she being the only 
one of the servants who was likely to intrude on Miss 
Wyndham's supposed solitude. But Mrs. Roper was sitting 
with Mrs. Tyrell, for whom her friendship was unbounded 
ever since the late occurrence, and whose departure was 
now so imminent that she would not willingly lose a 
moment of her societ3\ Mr. Bowles was in his pantry, and 
Mary was snuffling over her work in the kitchen. After 
ascertaining these points, and making some occasional 
noise by fidgetting about, Rachel returned to the upper 
poi-tion of the house, taking care to shut close the door at 
the top of the kitchen stairs ; she then fetched her bonnet 
and shawl, and stationed herself on the first landing-place 
above the drawing-room floor to watch for the Captain's 
egress. Rachel had no doubt of his success ; such a girl as 
she was would be sure to have no doubt ; he had come to 
persuade Miss Wyndham to consent to a runaway match, 
and it was in the natural course of things that she should 
consent. Then Rachel mused agreeably upon what might 
be her own prospects, and the rewards to which she would 
be entitled in payment of her devoted services. After a 
while she began to get rather nervous about discovery, and 
to think the process of persuasion a very long one. 

Emma also had been convinced that her lover's object 
was to prevail upon her to elope with him, but she had 
resolved, v/ith much more vigour than Rachel could possibly 
have imagined, that she would not consent to such a step. 
She was determined to take her stand immovably on her 



DUPES AND VICTIMS. 465 

own proposition. If Captain Baines truly loved her, would 
he not wait a year for her 1 Certainly lie would, if he saw 
that he could not move her to relent. She did not ask 
herself what she would do in the event of his persisting in 
his resolution of going and getting himself killed in the 
service of the Argentine Republic, for there could be no 
question but that he would yield this point at her desire, 
and await her majority. Captain Baines also had i-esolved — 
assuredly not to go and get himself killed if Emma would 
not consent to an immediate marriage, but to hold firm, 
and play his part out to the end, leaving her, if necessary, 
under that impression. His was a desperate game ; he knew 
this well enough, and that, if he could not carry off his 
prize now, it was lost to him for ever. So it was, then : 
the two wills were pitted against each other; and the 
strongest would triumph. 

I do not purpose to give a detailed account of the inter- 
view, and this, I think, the reader will scarcely regret, 
seeing that he can take small interest in a love-affair of such 
a description ; or, rather, the sole interest he can feel must 
be from a desire that the poor foolish girl should escape 
from the toils of an unprincipled schemer. Armed with her 
previous determination and, as I have already said, recoiling 
instinctively from the step to which her lover desired to 
urge her, Emma offered a much stronger resistance both 
to arguments and entreaties than he had by any means 
anticipated. If he trusted her fidelity, why could he not 
wait a year ? That was her strong point. She was willing 
to go against her parents' wishes for the love of him ; surely 
that was much ; he might be content with that promise. 
But she would not steal away from her father's house in the 
dead of night, to break their hearts, perhaps, and be the talk 
of the whole town the next day. Baines felt that all wa« 
lost if he, on his part, did not make show of an equal deter 
minatioD. He must bring up his great piece of artillery 

2 H 



4:66 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

and point it, and, if that failed, then nothing remained for 
him but to retire and confess himself beaten. Accordingly, 
he rose from the sofa on which they were both sitting, with 
a changed countenance, and confronted her. In a few words, 
in which he now mingled no accents of tenderness, he 
reminded her of his circumstances ; he was almost a penni- 
less man, bereaved of all his worldly prospects, mainly 
because he had committed what most people would style a 
gros^ indiscretion by apparently neglecting the very per- 
son on whom all his hopes depended, to follow a vain and 
delusive hope. But he did not reproach her, nor did he 
even blame himself; he could not have acted otherwise than 
he had done, and he knew that he must pay the penalty. 
Yet to remain on in England, without money and without 
employment, he would not and could not do ; he must dis- 
appear from the scene, and release her from an engagement 
which probably she would learn soon to regret. Every 
motive, every argument, every calumny which could be 
invented, would be brought to bear upon her to induce her 
to give him up, and he would therefore neither permit her 
to bind herself by a promise nor expose himself to a second 
and still bitterer disapjiointment. One alternative certainly 
had remained ; an honourable position had been offered to 
him, such a position as he could without blushing ask her 
to share with him, but its acceptance implied that she must 
at once become his wife. This she refused to do, nor did 
he complain of her for her refusal. She was but acting 
according to the dictates of what the world would call 
prudence ; he had therefore no more to say, but to bid her 
an eternal farewell. He pronounced all this firmly, in a 
very dreary tone, but still with an unfaltering voice, acting 
his part well, it must be confessed, and not too dramatically. 
He then walked straight to the door, gave her one parting 
desolate look ; he was certainly going, and he would have 
gone had his shot failed; but it had not failed. Emma 



DUPES AND VICTIMS. 467 

started fiom the sofa, rushed to the door, and laid her hand 
on his, which had half turned the handle. Then he knew 
that he had won the victory ; and, as if seized by an 
irrepressible impulse, he ventured to clasp her in his arms 
and call her his " own Emma." Emma quickly disengaged 
herself, and, returning to the sofa, buried her face in 
her hands, and cried bitterly. Seating himself again by 
her side, the Captain addressed to her some soothing 
words, and then she was able to discuss the subject more 
calmly. 

Emma was conscious, after the weakness she had betrayed, 
of not being able to resume her former decided attitude. 
She had to descend to the feebler defence of remonstrance. 
" How can I do such a thing ? How can you ask me to do 
it ?" she plaintively exclaimed. "To leave my home with 
one who is not my husband, and to travel with him, cross the 
sea with him, and every one to know that I have done this 
thing — the remembrance of it will fill me with shame as long 
as I live ! " 

Captain Baines, seeing where the difficulty lay, and that 
it was more her womanly pride and regard for her reputation 
than any strong sense of duty which stood in his way, at 
once addressed himself to the task of divesting the proceed- 
ing of all its most offensive features. It was not an elopement, 
he emphatically declared ; never would he have proposed 
to her anything which could ever so slightly infringe on 
the most delicate feelings of propriety. Not two hours 
would have elapsed before he had placed her under the 
protection of a lady who was his dear and intimate friend ; 
and during that short interval he would not be alone with 
her even for one moment. She would have her maid 
as her companion, and he would simply have the honour of 
escorting her. His friends were about to sail at once for Nor- 
way in their yacht ; there would be no travelling about ; and 
she would not leave their company except as his wife. Then 
2 H 2 



468 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

Emma seemed to waver, and he again brought up or, at 
least, gave her a glimpse of the muzzle of his great gun. Of 
course, he continued, he would not and could not urge her 
to take this step. He had no brilliant prospects to offer to 
her. He had lost the rich inheritance which he had valued 
mainly for the hopes of sharing it with her ; he had also 
lost the annuity which he used to receive from his uncle, 
who had simply bequeathed him five hundred pounds ; he 
had nothing more than a competence and a devoted heart to 
offer to her. Doubtless, the world held out to her a far 
brighter fortune. Riches would be laid at her feet, though 
none could love her better than he had done. Perhaps, 
after all, it was well that he should sacrifice himself, and 
leave her to a grander destiny ; and then he made a move- 
ment to rise again. But Emma remembered what she had 
felt when he had his hand on the door ready for departure, 
and knew that she had not the resolution to let him go j 
so she detained him, and at last she gave a faint acquies- 
cence. 

Baines, knowing how sensitive she was on the point of 
honour, and what value she would attach to having passed 
her word, was not satisfied until he had extracted from her 
a decided promise. Then he drew a ring from his little 
finger, and, taking her hand, placed it on the finger which 
would receive the wedding-ring. "You are now my 
betrothed," he said ; and then he left her. He was too wise 
to enter into any particulars with her respecting the flight. 
These were reserved for Rachel. That damsel followed him 
downstairs and lot him out, remaining a minute at the hall- 
door without closing it ; after which she, too, went out, 
shutting it now audibly after her. 

Baines had done wisely in insisting on a solemn promise 
from Emma's lips, for, after he was gone, and she had sat for 
a few minutes in a state of bewildered excitement, a terrible 
reaction began to set in. Had she given only a faint and 



FORSAKEN AND FORSAKING. 4G9 

general acquiescence, which ^vould not, she thought, have 
bound her in honour, as now she considered herself bound, 
I feel certain that she would have recoiled from the act to 
which she had rashly consented. Previous to that consent, 
and while the matter depended on her will, it seemed dread- 
ful to part with her lover ; insufferable to go to Gorsham 
and then to the seaside, with no hope of ever seeing him 
again ; intolerable that her affections should be sacrificed 
to the prejudices of her family ; but now that she had 
consented to give up all for him, it seemed dreadful to 
abandon her home and fly from her unsuspecting parents 
and her gentle, loving sister. "WTien she thought of the 
carriage bringing back her mother and Gertrude, with uncon- 
scious smiling countenances, she felt as if her heart would 
almost break. But the die was cast, and it was too late to 
repent. So, at least, thought the unhappy girl. Then she 
looked at her ring ; it gave her no pleasure. It was formed 
of two consecutive circlets which fitted into each other, two 
hands being joined together, with a motto, Fidelite. Yes, 
she was tied and bound by her own tongue, and here was 
the pledge that she must make good her word, and be faith- 
ful to her promise. Then she took the ring off and concealed 
it in her pocket. 



CHAPTER XXXIX. 

FORSAKEN AND FORSAKING. 

Wednesday was the day for Tyrell's ' departure. Mrs. 
Wyndham had settled the accounts on Monday, and had 
then paid her what was due of her wages, but this small 
amount had been nearly all expended, partly in helping to 



470 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

make up Marys loss and partly in a few necessary pur- 
chases for herself; so that, as already stated, the overplus 
was just one pound, one shilling, and sixpence. It had 
been Mrs. Tyrell's intention, in the first instance, to go into 
a lodging and look out for a new situation. Mrs. Wynd- 
ham had promised to give her a character, and she hoped to 
hear of a place, either by means of the priests attached to 
Farm Street or through the nuns of the House of Mercy in 
Little Union Place, Blandford Square. These latter she 
knew also would, with proper recommendations, take in 
destitute women out of place ; but she expected to be able 
to support herself without having recourse to charity. Her 
first idea had been to inquire for the situation of house- 
keeper to a priest, a situation for which she was eminently 
qualified, and which would have satisfied all her own wishes. 
But this very reason induced her, on reflection, to renounce 
the project of seeking it. Mrs. Tyrell considered herself 
called to the vocation of service, not to make a living in as 
comfortable a way as was compatible with the position, but 
in order to attain to the perfection for which she was 
designed ; and something seemed to whisper to her that 
God would bring her to that perfection through the crosses 
incident to a life of domestic service. Far should it be 
from her, therefore, to choose or indulge a preference, and, 
by so doing, escape in part from those very trials which were 
needed to complete the work of God in her soul. Long ago 
had she placed herself in His hands, like clay in those of 
tlie potter, and she would never withdraw this act of renun- 
ciation. So she would leave herself to His providence as 
to the selection of a situation, and, if the next should prove, 
as this last had proved, rather uncongenial, she would 
welcome it, nevertheless, as His appointment. 

Her present condition now made a change of plan neces- 
sary as respected the seeking of a lodging, and she must 
turn her thoughts at once towards the House of Mercy- 



FORSAKEN AND FOKSAKING. 471 

She remembered that one sovereign, was required on admis- 
sion ; she possessed that necessary sum and eighteenpence 
over and above ; what other conditions were required for 
admission she did not remember, but she concluded that 
there must be satisfactory recommendations, at least, from 
some priest to whom the individual was known. These 
she knew she could procure, and, as she did not wish to let 
any one in the house know her destination, since it would 
have entailed the discovery of her voluntary self-impoverish- 
ment in behalf of Mary, she did not like to apply to Mrs. 
Wyndham for a testimonial. Doubtless, she might be 
received on the priest's recommendation at once, as thig 
would be a security that anything further that might be 
required would also be forthcoming on application. 

After seeing Mary off on the Wednesday morning, Mrs* 
Tyrell made her own short preparations:. Leaving her box 
packed ready to follow her, she reserved a few necessary 
articles to put in a basket which she could carry on her 
arm. She could not take the box with her, or afford a cab 
to convey it, had she even known whither she was going. 
" I suppose," she said to Mrs. Roper, " that my box can 
remain here until I either fetch or send for it 1 " 

" Yes, of course, and I will tell Jervis and his wife about 
it. We go to-morrow, you know. But, dear Mrs. Tyrelb 
where are you going to-day yourself ? " 

" T shall go to a friend's house in the first instance," she 
replied, " and abide by the advice I receive." 

" Well, I am glad you have a friend in London and an 
adviser ; not but that you deserve to have many friends, 
only you keep yourself so quiet ; no one knows you, or 
knows of you — at least, I thought not." 

" This friend knows me well, and I can depend upon 
him." 

Gertrude seized an unobserved moment to come and bid 
Tyrell adieu, which she did with tears in her eyes. "'We 



472 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

shall see you sometimes, Mrs. Tyrell, I hope, when we 
return to town," she said kindly and almost affectionately. 
" I am so sorry you are going. You will pray for me, will 
you not?" 

" Indeed I will, my dear young lady, and may God bless 
and direct you in all His ways, and your dear sister, too. 
You must watch over her like her good angel, Miss 
Gertrude." 

" But she is my elder sister." 

''No matter; she loves the world better than you do, 
and the world is a dangerous place. You love her dearly, 
I know." 

" That I do. I could not love her better." 

"We can always learn to love better — to love more 
rightly ; love her rightly, dear Miss Gertrude." She said 
this with some emphasis, while pressing the hand which 
was extended towards her. Gertrude noticed the almost 
transparent whiteness of the thin lingers, remarkable in a 
person whose life was one of daily toil, but she had time 
only to bid a hasty adieu, for she heard her mother's voice 
above, and, fearing that her affectionate leave-taking with 
the cook would find small acceptance in her eyes, she 
hastened upstairs and took refuge in the dining-room, before 
Mrs. Wyndham had descended far enough to notice her 
daughter emerging from the kitchen stairs. 

" Love her rightly," Gertrude repeated to herself There 
was a sort of insight and almost prescience in Tyrell's 
remarks which made Gertrude always regard them some- 
what in the light of oracles. "Love her rightly." Did 
she love her sister rightly 1 Had she loved her rightly 1 
What was it to love rightly 1 and then Gertrude fell to 
musing. 

Mrs. Tyrell left the house before the servants' dinner 
hour ; Mrs. Jervis, the coachman's wife, having come in to 
supply her place in the culinary department for the last 



FORSAKEN AND FORSAKING. 473 

remaining day, as well as to make herself generally useful. 
Tyrell, then, went forth with her basket on her arm, and 
directed her steps to the Friend's House. The reader need 
scarcely be informed who the Friend was from whom she 
was going to seek counsel. She repaired to the Jesuits' 
church, and there she remained in silent prayer before the 
altar for about an hour, after which she rose from her 
knees, and went to the clergy house in Hill Street to ask 
for the Father who acted as her spiritual director. She 
was told that he was not at home, and might not be back 
until the evening — perhaps not before six o'clock. Mrs. 
Tyrell, not being known to any of the other priests, could 
not apply to them for her testimonial, so she turned away 
from the door, reflecting what she had best do. The usual 
hour for dinner was now approaching, but, should she not 
obtain admission that evening into the House of Mercy, she 
would have to look out for her night's lodging ; so must 
economize her eighteenpence. Besides, she was not at all 
hungry, which, under the circumstances, might have been 
considered as fortunate, had not the disinclination to eat 
proceeded from indisposition. For, in fact, Mrs. Tp^ell felt 
^-ery far from well ; but this she scarcely noticed, not being 
in the habit of adverting to her own sensations. She had 
first made the resolution of never speaking of them, a 
sacrifice which to many persons is a hard one, but without 
which they, at least, will never achieve the further triumph 
of not dwelling upon them inwardly. Mrs. Tyrell had 
accomplished both victories, and she found her reward in 
that peculiar freedom of the spirit from being oppressed by 
the sufferings of its bodily companion which we see ex- 
hibited in so striking a manner in the saints. iSTever 
stopping, therefore, to pity hei^elf or think about herself, 
she now proceeded to the House of Mercy in the neighbour- 
hood of Blandford Square. She must fill up the time some- 
how, and this seemed to be the best way. Perhaps the 



474 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

nuns might admit her when she stated her case, and the 
reason why she had been unable to provide herself, as yet, 
with the necessary recommendation. 

But she was not admitted. These institutions have their 
rules by which, of course, they must abide ; and one of the 
imperative conditions of admission was that an applicant 
should produce a satisfactory recommendation from her 
spiritual director as well as from the family with whom 
she last lived. 

" My late mistress, Mrs. Wyndham," said Tyrell, " leaves 
town to-morrow morning. I only quitted her service 
to-day, and I should not like to trouble her this afternoon. 
1 could, however, obtain a testimonial from her, in a day or 
two, by writing to her ; do you think that in the meantime 

a letter from Father certifying the truth of what 

I state about myself would procure me admission at 
once % " 

The Sister thought that possibly it might. Then Tyrell 
once more resumed her perambulation of the streets, than 
which, thronged as they may be, and all the more so when 
thronged, no solitude can be more desolate to the friendless ; 
but Tyrell never felt desolate, because she never felt friend- 
less. The streets, however, were not thronged, at least not 
in that part of London, but they looked very damp and 
dismal, for it was raining, and after that steady fashion 
which bespeaks a continuance. Evidently a wet afternoon 
had set in. A kind of faintishness had now begun to steal 
over the poor woman, who, thinking it might proceed from 
exhaustion, bought herself a penny roll. But the bread 
seemed to turn to sawdust in her mouth ; she could not 
eat, and bestowed her morsel on a ragged old man. Then 
she went into the chapel in Spanish Place; here she could 
find rest for both body and spirit ; and here she remained 
praying before the Blessed Sacrament, and before the image 
of Mary, until six o'clock or thereabouts, when she set off 



FORSAKEN AND FORSAKING. 475 

again for the house of the Jesuit Fathers. But here she 
was doomed to meet with a fresh disappointment. Father 

had been in during her absence, but had been called 

away since ; the youth who answered the bell believed that 
it was to some sick person who lived at a distance ; at any 

rate, Father had said that he did not think he should 

be back before eight o'clock. It was now evident that Mrs. 
Tyrell must seek a lodging for that night, but, feeling too 
faint and weary to undertake any immediate search, she 
again entered the church in Farm Street for the double 
purpose of repose and of prayer. 

She had not been there, however, very long before she 
was seized with a shivering fit, and, believing it to be owing 
to her wet clothes, she thought that she liad better move 
about in order to dry them, in a measure, for it had now 
almost ceased raining, and also to get some warmth into 
her frame. At first she felt somewhat revived in the open 
air, and, with the view of obtaining a seat, she made her way 
into the Park, which she found emptied of company by the 
recent rain. The benches shone with wet, but she was so 
utterly exhausted by this last exertion that she was glad 
to be able to sit down anywhere. It soon recommenced 
raining, and she felt too weak even to hold up her umbrella. 
Whether in this state she dozed or simply forgot herself she 
could not tell, but after a while she came to herself again, 
only to realize all the discomforts and difficulties of her 
position. She had a great sense of numbness all over her, 
and she felt that it was increasing ; she must therefore 
return at once to Hill Street, or she might soon lose the 
power of moving. Accordingly she made an effort to rise, 
but her head swam, her strength failed her, and she sank 
back on the bench. Making a secret aspiration, and sum- 
moning all her remaining powers, she once more endeavoured 
to regain her feet ; again there Avas the sense of swimming 
in her head, accompanied this time by a nearly total oblite- 



476 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

ration of surrounding objects ; she fell back, and all con- 
sciousness forsook her. . . . 

The evening in Berkeley Square was a very quiet one. 
Mrs. Wyndham was tired with packing, or, rather, with 
superintending the packing. Mr. Wyndham was low in 
spirits ; he was musing over the unsatisfactory state of his 
affairs. Sanders was cheerful ; he always was cheerful ; 
but he felt that this was the last evening they were to sit 
down together, perhaps, for many a long day. He was of 
an affectionate disposition, and loved them all in a way, 
while Gertrude had become very dear to him. The 
approach of the moment for parting had accordingly a 
subduing effect upon him. Gertrude was depressed on 
several accounts, and particularly at the thought of losing 
her uncle. And poor Emma — she was the saddest of all 
inwardly, and with good reason. No one expected her to 
be gay with her London season brought to this abrupt 
close, and neither her mother nor her sister would have 
been the least surprised had she been very ill-humoured 
and very captious ; but this was by no means the case. She 
was extremely dejected, and rather absent in manner, but, 
so far from manifesting any asperity, there was a kind of 
gentleness mingled with her sadness which was quite 
unusual with her. Both Mrs. Wyndham and Gertrude 
noticed this circumstance, and so did Uncle John, who 
always noticed everything, being in this respect the anti- 
podes of his brother-in-law, who was very unobservant in 
his domestic circle unless something occurred to ruffle or 
annoy him. 

The anxious mother feared that Emma was not well 
after the unpleasant scene which occurred at breakfast on 
the previous day ; her displeasure, which never lasted long 
against any of her children, had soon passed away, and a 
reaction of compassion in favour of the offender had set in, 
a reaction strengthened by the unusual mildness of Emma's 



FORSAKEN AND FORSAKING. 477 

bearing. " My dear, I am sure you are tired," she said ; 
" you look pale and fagged ; you must go and get some 
beauty sleep." 

Alas for poor Emma ! she was not likely to sleep much 
either before or after the midnight hour, but she must go 
up to her room before her sister, so availed herself of this 
remark to retire. When she approached to kiss her mother, 
the thoughts which rushed upon her were well-nigh over- 
whelming. Emma was not tender-hearted, not even what 
is generally called warm-hearted, but few there are who 
have not more heart somewhere within their bosoms than 
others give them credit for, or even they themselves 
suspect. The heart is overlaid and suffocated, rather than 
wanting. So Emma had a heart, and she was painfully 
aware at that moment that she had one. But she must 
stifle all emotion ; so she kissed her mother, and then 
looked round at her father, who was in his arm-chair. She 
must kiss him, too ; perhaps it would be the last loving 
kiss which he would ever permit her to give him. 

" Don't disturb your father, dear," said Mrs. Wyndham, 
"he has just dropped off asleep." 

Emma felt a pang of disappointment as she turned 
aAvay. Her eyes now rested on her uncle, and a softened 
feeling towards him came over her which she had never 
before experienced. " Then," she said, " I must kiss 
you, uncle." 

This was the first time she had ever kissed him, and he 
knew it. He had kissed her on his arrival : that was all. 
His kind heart was moved at once, and he responded affec- 
tionately to the unexpected caress. " Good bless you, my 
dear child," he said. 

Emma murmured something inaudible in return, and then 
hastily left the room. 

" Poor Emma ! " ejaculated Uncle John, half to him- 
self, half to the others. 



478 THE WYNDIIAM FAMILY. 

" Yes, poor dear," replied the mother ; " Emma does not 
like leaving town." 

But Uncle John did not think it was quite, or at least 
wholly, that. He was at a loss to know what it exactly 
was, but it was not that. " Poor Emma ! " he might well 
say. She was about to leave all that she had ever loved, and 
the warm nest in which she had been reared and cherished 
— for whom and for what 1 Happier by far she who was 
lying on the damp ground, forsaken of all, with not a friend 
to claim her living or mourn her dead ! 



CHAPTER XL. 

FLIGHT AND PURSUIT. 

Gertrude lingered on that evening until the whole party 
retired for the night, in order to see as much of her uncle as 
she could. Emma profited by this time to make her neces- 
sary arrangements. She found Rachel awaiting her in her 
room. Under cover of the general packing that damsel 
had no difficulty in accomplishing the needful preparations. 
She had also asked for and obtained a week's holiday, to 
visit a sister of hers who lived in London, and this furnished 
her with an excuse to pack and remove her own box in the 
course of the day, saying that she meant to go early, and 
the box would be out of the way. She then put a few 
things belonging toMiss Wyndham in a lined wicker basket 
such as she could herself carry. About its contents there 
was a short discussion with her young mistress. Emma 
would take none of her jewellery, reserving only two 
brooches — the one containing a lock of her father's and 
mother's hair, and the other the butterfly given her bj' her 
uncle. She also turned out some handsome Mechlin and 



FLIGHT AND PURSUIT. 479 

Brussels lace which Rachel had put in the basket on her 
own responsibility. " But it is your own, ma'am/' said the 
girl, " Law ! you are stripping yourself of everything." 

" I am robbing them of myself," replied Emma, " but I 
will not be a plunderer. These things were not given me to 
carry off in this way. Mama can send them to me if she 
likes. Quick ! take them out, Rachel ; I never told you to 
put them in." 

Rachel was compelled to obey. " Dear me, Miss Wynd- 
ham ! " she exclaimed, " I don't like to see you so sad. It 
is not like a bride that you look at all ! " 

" Such a bridal ! " said Emma with a sigh, which was 
almost a groan. 

"But all will come right," continued Rachel, as she tied 
down the basket, endeavouring still to convey comfort as 
best she could. " All will come right, you may depend. 
Those things always does come right. What's done is done. 
Papas and mamas knows that ; and then they forgive. You 
and the Captain will throw yourselves at their feet quite 
touchiug " 

" Don't talk to me, Rachel," said Emma, interrupting her 
with a kind of nervous impatience ; " I cannot stand it ; 
only tell me what is necessary, and then leave me." 

The waiting-woman, thus cut short in her eloquence, 
limited herself, as she was bid, to making her mistress 
understand what she was to do ; the rest had all been, or 
would be, provided for. Miss Wyndham was to leave her 
room at four o'clock ; she would find her ready in the hall 
with the wicker basket. Then Rachel, after suggesting a 
few cautions, departed, but not to take any rest as yet. She 
lingered up until the servants had all gone to bed. The 
men slept below, and were sure to hear nothing as soon as 
they were well off to sleep. It was a great piece of good 
luck, in Rachel's estimation, that Mr. Sanders had chosen 
to remain in his attic, saying that, as he was going so soon, 



480 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

it was not worth the trouble of moving him to his former 
bedroom on the ground floor. Rachel judged rightly that 
Mr. Sanders had good ears, and she had something to do 
which would make a certain degree of noise, however care- 
fully she might perform the operation, not to speak of the 
sounds, slight as they might be, which the exit of two 
persons from the house at four o'clock in the morning must 
entail. Rachel then proceeded to undraw the two bolts of 
the hall-door. The key she knew was in a drawer of the 
hall table ; this fact she ascertained, and oiled it that it 
might turn easily. Then she deposited the wicker basket 
on a chair in the hall, and crept up to bed. 

Emma, left to herself, had taken off her evening gown, 
but retained all the rest of her clothing that she might not 
have to put on more than her morning dress and shawl 
when she rose. Then she drew the bed-clothes over her, and 
when Gertrude came up she feigned sleep ; but sleep was far 
from her eyelids most of that night, nor did she wish to sleep. 
She tried to think of the life of happiness before her, as she 
hoped ; of her affianced husband, his devotion to her, his dis- 
interestedness — but it would not do ; other thoughts were 
in the ascendant, and drove away all her visions of bliss. 
Yet about three o'clock she did fall asleep, and then awoke 
with a start, fearing she had let the appointed hour go by. 
It was daylight, of course ; she looked at her watch and saw 
that it still wanted a quarter to four ; so she quietly slipped 
on her morning attire and took her shawl. Her boots and 
bonnet she would put on below. Her own bed was near to 
the window, and she had to pass Gertrude's on her way to 
the door. Feeling herself impelled to take a look at the 
dear countenance, she held back the curtain which shaded 
her, and gazed at the sleeper wistfully for a moment. Her 
sister's face was flushed, she seemed to be suffering from a 
bad dream, her lips moving, though the eyes were closed ; 
she muttered something, and Emma, stooping over her, 



FLIGHT AND PURSUIT. 481 

thought she caught her own name. She had made no 
sound, but there is something in the very vicinity of another, 
something in the mere fact of an eye resting on the sleeper, 
which will have the effect of awakening, as by a strange 
magnetic influence. So Gertrude opened her large, soft, 
blue eyes ; then Emma imprinted a kiss lightly on her 
forehead and slunk away to her bed again. She could not 
venture to leave the room at that moment, for her sister 
was half, if not fully, awake. 

Gertrude, however, had not been sufficiently roused to 
full consciousness, but a minute after, coming to herself 
more completely, she recalled the vision of Emma up and 
dressed and bending over her ; perhaps it was part of a 
painful dream which had disturbed her. So, to make sure, 
she called to her sister, '' Emma, was that you l " 

" Do you want anything, Gertrude ?" replied her sister. 

" No, nothing ; only I fancied I saw you. I have been 
dreaming, I suppose ; " and then she turned in her bed, and 
dropped off to sleep again. 

After a short interval Emma rose once more. In the 
course of the night she had turned the handle of the door 
and left it ajar. There was a green baize one outside, 
which simply fell to. She was able, therefore, to leave the 
room quite noiselessly, taking her boots in her hand, and 
closing only this outer door. In the hall she found Rachel 
mth the basket. Emma put on her boots and bonnet 
without uttering a syllable. Then they went out into the 
street, Rachel shutting the hall door, which she had pre- 
viously unlocked, as noiselessly as she could. They had 
not been heard. Once the waiting-maid glanced back, and 
said, " All right, no one is coming." They soon reached 
Mount Street, where the cab was in waiting. We shall not 
follow them, but return to the sister's room. 

Emma had not gone very long before Gertrude awoke, 
with the impression on her mind that she had heard some 

2i 



482 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

sound while lying between asleep and awake. Whether it 
were really so, or that she had again been dreaming, the 
effect was an unaccountable sense of uneasiness. So she 
once more called to Emma, and asked her if she was awake, 
but, receiving no answer, concluded that she was asleep. 
It would be unkind to wake her; yet Gertrude felt so 
restless and disturbed that she would have been glad to be 
able to interchange a few words. So she sat up in bed, 
looked at her watch, and saw that it was nearly half-past 
four. How long that night seemed ! Would that she 
could drop asleep again ; but she felt too hot and feverish. 
Perhaps, if she took a turn in the room, it might cool and 
calm her. She got up, and, throwing her dressing-gown 
about her, went to the window. She was now very near 
Emma's bed, and observed that, contrary to her custom, for 
her sister was very fond of air, the curtains of the French 
bed, instead of being pushed back, were dropped quite close. 
Gertrude, thinking that they had slipped forward while her 
sister slept, gently drew the one nearest the head aside, and 
then she saw that the bed was empty. Her eyes instinctively 
wandered to the door ; it was ajar. The terrible truth did 
not at onf e flash on the unhappy girl ; she fancied that 
Emma, like herself, had been disturbed by some sound and 
had gone to listen ; but this was but the illusion of a 
moment. On the dressing-table there lay a letter. *' For 
Gertrude " was its sole direction. She saw it, she seized it, 
tore it open, read but the first line, and then, uttering a 
sharp cry, sank to the ground. She had fainted. 

Now it so happened that Uncle John, whose attic was 
above the two sisters' room, was awake at that moment. 
He heard the faint shriek and the noise which followed, as 
of something falling, and lost not a minute in putting on 
his wrapper and slippers to go and see what was the matter. 
Opening the outer door of the girls' room, he found the 
inner one a]ar, so entered at once. There lay poor Gertrude 



FLIGHT AND PURSUIT. 483 

on the floor. To raise her and sprinkle cold water on her 
face, in order to bring her to herself, was the work of an 
instant. But where was Emma 1 Her bed was forsaken — 
had she gone to seek help ? but, if so, he would have met 
her as he came down. There was plainly something wrong, 
and, if the truth did not at once occur to him, it must be 
remembered that he was quite in the dark as to the attach- 
ment of Emma to Baines ; even her preference for him as 
a partner in the dance never having been so much as hinted 
in his presence. He laid Gertrude on her bed, with her 
head propped up, rubbed her hands, and then looked about 
for some eau-de-Cologne, or aromatic salts, or whatever 
restorative might be at hand. While casting his eye about, 
he perceived the letter on the floor, picked it up and read it. 
There he had the terrible explanation of all :: — 

" My own dearest sister, — When you read this, I shall 
be far away. What it has cost me to keep my promise, 
I cannot tell you. Much as I love him, I never could have 
taken this step, I belie v-e, but for my woi-d which I had 
passed. So bitter are the prejudices against Frederick in 
my family, that I knew I never could get a hearing for him,, 
and that it was hopeless to expect that I should ever be 
permitted to become his wife. I had meant to wait until 
I was of age, when, if Papa and Mama could not be pre- 
vailed upon to consent, I thought I should be free to choose 
my own lot ; as it is, I am doing what I hate, and know to 
be wrono:, but I must have lost him for ever had I refused. 
I cannot explain that now. I dare not write to my dearest 
mother ; you must try and comfort her, my own dear 
Gertrude, and tell her, and Papa, too, how wretched I shall 
be till I can obtain their forgiveness." 

Gertrude now gave signs of returning consciousness. 
Sanders bathed her temples with some eau-de-Cologne, and 
presently she revived, gazed at her uncle, and then, clasping 
2 I 2 



484 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

her hands with a look of agony, exclaimed, " She is gone — 
Oh, save her ! " 

" Who is the villain 1 Can it be Baines ■? " he asked. 
Gertrude assented. It was with difficulty that Sanders 
restrained himself, but the fear of exciting his niece gave 
him self-command. 

" O uncle ! " said Gertrude, wringing her hands, "it is 
my fault. I knevsr she loved him, and, though I blamed 
her, I kept her secret. She might have been saved had I 
told." 

" We will save her still, if possible," said Sanders, who 
could not, under the circumstances, reproach the poor girl 
with her weakness. He had soon arranged his plan. 
Fetching down Roper to take charge of his niece, he told 
her the whole truth, which, indeed, could not be concealed, 
but she was to keep it secret from every one in the house as 
long as she could. When the other servants got up, she 
was to say that Miss Gertrude had been taken ill in the 
night. " I never would have any one tell a lie, of course," 
said the good man ; " but, if you can leave the impression 
that Miss Wyndham is with her sister, it will be well. 
For instance, if you have to take her up a cup of tea, you 
could take up two. There's no harm in that. Our poor 
fugitive is not gone much more than half an hour ; and I 
may catch her up. That rascal never expected we should 
be on his track so early." 

Mrs. Roper was troubled with few scruples as regarded 
strict veracity in an emergency, and was quite prepared 
to do much more than leave impressions. She was also 
sincerely attached to her two young ladies, so could be 
thoroughly relied upon for secrecy. 

"And keep it from her poor mother as long as you can," 
added Sanders, who went up hastily to put on his clothes, 
after bidding Roper to bolt the hall-door before the house- 
hold was astir, that there might be no evidence of its having 



FLIGHT AXD PURSUIT. 485 

been opened. Then he bethought him that his brother-in- 
law had a latch-key, so he turned into his recent apart- 
ment, now restored to its usual use of a di'essing-room for 
the master of the house. There he found Wyndham's coat 
and waistcoat, examined the pockets, and, to his great 
satisfaction, possessed himself of the key. 

He forthwith hurried towards Piccadilly, down Berkeley 
Street. Gertrude had fortunately remembered the number 
of Baines's lodging. He was soon there, but had to knock 
and ring more than once before the door was opened, 
although there was evidently a movement above stairs, a 
window being raised and then re-closed. A middle-aged 
personage at last appeared. She must, however, have been 
up already, for sufficient time had not elapsed to allow of 
dressing. 

" I wish to see Captain Baines before he leaves," said 
Sanders. 

" He has left," replied the woman, making as if about 
to close the door. 

" Stop a bit ; I mu^t have his address. Where is he 
gone ? Of course you can tell me." 

" The gentleman bid me tell any one as might ask after 
him that he was gone to Folkestone. He went airly thi 
morning." 

" Very early, even if he went only five minutes ago," 
replied Sanders, who had managed to edge himself into the 
narrow passage ; " but he must have left some address, 
surely. He is not gone to stay at Folkestone ; I know 
better." 

" I am sure I can't say ; that's all I can tell you." 

" No, my good lady, it is not all you can tell me ; I am 
quite sure of that ; though it may be all you were bid to 
say. Are you the landlady ?" 

" No, sir, not exactly. I am put in by the landlord to 
look after the lodging ; he never comes a'most." 



486 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

" Now do you see this 1 " said Sanders, showing her a 
ten-pound note. " I will just tell you how you may earn 
this bit of paper very cheaply, and honestly too. Every- 
body is free to give his opinion. I know that this Captain 
is not gone to Folkestone, and I'll be bound you know as 
much too. Now just let me know where you really think 
he is gone." 

" Well, sir, there can be no harm, certainly, in speaking 
out one's thoughts, I fancy he's gone down the river 1" 

"Why do you think so r' 

" Because there's a gentleman, a lord he is, who has 
come here several times this last day or two, and I've heard 
them talking over their plans ; at least — I catched bits." 

" That's Lord Selden." 

" O, you know him, sir. Please don't mention me." 

" Never fear. So you think he's gone down the river 
with Lord Selden?" 

Sanders had risen in the dame's estimation considerably 
since she found that he was familiar with lords. " His 
lordship, as, I dare say, you know, sir, has a yacht. He 
keeps it just now at Greenwich, and he has a villa there or 
thereabouts, at least so I gathered. I think he's about 
to go cruising, and is taking the Captain ; they're great 
friends, he and the Captain." 

" And you don't know the name of Lord Selden's villa 
or of his yacht 1 " 

" No, sir, I don't know neither, or I would tell you." 

Then Sanders gave her the ten-pound note, and set off 
for Black wall. Here he hired a wherry to take him across 
to Greenwich. "What schooner is that getting up its 
sails ? " he asked of his ferryman. " I see it belongs to the 
Royal Yacht Club." 

" That's the JEmj^ress, Lord Selden's yacht. She's a neat 
craft." 

" Is Lord Selden on board ? " 



KATE SELDEN. 487 

" I think not, but I take it he'll be under way soon this 
morning. They've been very busy, the crew have, for this 
hour and more. We shall just pass under her bows." 
Then the man hallooed to the sailors, and inquired if his 
lordship was aboard. 

No, he was not aboard, but was expected in about an 
hour's time. " Where shall I find him, do you suppose ? '* 
asked Sanders, to which question the individual, apparently, 
in command as lieutenant replied that Lord Selden was, no 
doubt, at his villa, Pearl Bank. After some further direc- 
tions, Sanders bade the man pull as fast as he could for the 
shore. 



CHAPTER XLI. 

KATE SELDEN. 

Pearl Bank was a pretty little villa situated on some rising 
ground, and commanding a view of the Thames from its 
lawn. The drawing-room had French windows opening out 
to a veranda, gay and sweet with flowers, and was furnished 
with luxury and taste. The breakfast things were ready 
on the table, notwithstanding the very early hour, for it 
was still very early. Two ladies occupied the apartment ; 
one of them was engaged in ministering to the comfort and 
endeavouring to cheer the spirits of the younger of the two, 
who was seated on a sofa, with her bonnet, just taken off. 
lying by her, and on whose face were the traces of recent 
tears. This young lady was Emma Wyndham ; the other 
was Lady Selden, generally known in the fashionable world, 
especially among men, as Kate Selden. It is a question- 
able compliment when ladies in the gay world are thus 
familiarly known by their Christian names; if sometimes 



488 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

it is a sign that they are liked, it is sometimes also a sign 
that they are hardly res[)ected as much as would be desirable. 
I fear this was true in the present case. 

Kate Selden was rather tall and had a fine figure, not 
one of classsical symmetry, but of extraordinary flexibility, 
which imparted to it a wonderful ease and grace. No one 
stepped better, no one sat a horse better, than did Kate 
Selden. She could ride to hounds as well as any man ; she 
could fire a rifle or steer a vessel. It was said that she also 
could smoke her cigarette, and I am inclined to believe it. 
There was nothing of this kind which Kate Selden could 
not do ; yet her manners and ways, free as they were, did 
not convey the impression of unfeminineness. Some women 
can be very masculine without being offensively so. Kate 
had not a face of regular beauty ; indeed, most women 
would have said that she was not at all pretty. The gentle- 
men, nevertheless, considered her as extremely aitractive. It 
has often been said that women do not like to hear men praise 
the beauty of other women. This I believe to be a gross 
calumny, and it may have partly originated from the circum- 
stance that the taste of women does not always coincide with 
that of men. There may be beauty so unquestionable as to 
unite the suff'rages of all, men and women alike, but on the 
debatable ground there is a great divergence of opinion 
between them. Kate was one of the admired by men, but 
women saw very little to praise in her. Perhaps she took 
more pains to please men, though occasionally, from caprice 
or a private motive of her own, she would coax and pet some 
woman, and then she was sure to succeed. It is flattering 
to self-love to form an exception. But what Kate Selden 
loved was to be surrounded by admirers, and she accom- 
plished her object. A married woman has facilities in this 
way which the unmarried lacks ; for should the husband not 
dislike seeing his wife the object of this species of courtship, 
admirers feel themselves on safer ground, since there can be 



KATE SELDEN. 489 

no question of ulterior intentions, the lady being already 
di^po^ed of. Under these circumstances, if a married lady 
should happen to take a plea><ure in a following of this 
description, a moderate degree of agreeability, enhanced by 
piquancy, a fair share of good looks, and the talent to njanage 
these advantages, may abundantly suffice for the purpose. 
Kate Selden knew well how to use such advantages, and 
very ill-natured things in consequence were whispered of 
Kate, particularly as the lady, it was asserted, was greedy of 
presents. She was said to be heartless, and to encourage 
her admirers for the sake of the bracelets and rings, and 
oinev similar solid attentions, which she was so condescending 
as to accept at their hands. 

If, however, the lady had limited herself to the bestowal 
of her smiles in a general way on a train of professed 
admirers, her reputation might have escaped further damage; 
but Kate liked, besides, to have one favoured devotee, with 
whom she might indulge in a little more play of heart, or 
the semblance of it. She had never been without such an 
appendage, and for the last two years Frederick Baines had 
filled this post. Kate liked him as well, perhaps, as she 
was able to like any one, but, above all, she liked to engross 
as much of heart as he had to give. Of course the 
slanderous world was not silent on this topic, but since, as 
Algernon once remarked. Lord Selden appeared to like Cap- 
tain Baines full as much as did his wife, there might be said 
to be no legitimate ground of complaint. Kate Selden, on 
her part, cared very little w^hat was said by the world, but 
she did care very much about keeping her devoted knight 
hanging on in attendance on her ; when therefore, on her 
arrival in England, she learnt, and that from himself, that 
he had been greatly struck by Emma Wyndham, she was not 
pleased. She had the prudence, however, to conceal her 
annoyance, even when the Captain's flirtation assumed a 
serious character, and she found that he was contemplating 



490 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

matrimony ; yet it was a bitter pill for her to swallow. True, 
lier own marriage already separated her from this man, but his 
marriage would separate him from her — which was quite 
another thing — and it must do so. Kate, however, was one 
to take what she could get. In the worst case, and sup- 
posing he did marry, she might succeed in retaining him 
within the charmed circle of her smiles; perhaps wile him 
back altogether by-and-by, when the monotonous happiness 
of domestic life should begin to oppress him with its flatness. 
But such a result entirely depended on her knowing how to 
accept with a good grace the place of confidante, and she did 
accept it with a very good grace, and acted out her character 
with a consummate art, professing to feel the deepest interest 
in the young creature who was to be the happy partner of 
the dearest friend she had on earth — so she called the worthy 
Captain to his face ; and moreover, when Lord Selden agreed 
to favour the elopement by carrying off the young couple in 
his yacht to Norway, his vv'ife lent herself with apparent 
cordiality to the scheme, which was now, as we have seen, 
so far on its way to realisation. 

" They do not know it yet," said poor Emma, looking at 
her watch. 

"O, no," replied Kate, sitting down by her and taking 
her hand, which she stroked caressingly ; " we shall be far 
down the river, with this favourable breeze, before London 
ladies and gentlemen are stirring. What a dear little dimpled 
hand ! Now, I am sure, Frederick gave you that ring. 
1 have seen it on his finger." 

" I was not thinking about pursuit or discovery," said 
Emma, making no response as to dimples or ring. " I was 
thinking of what Mama and Papa will feel when they 
know all." 

" You must not think about that now ; what is the use 1 
Of course you have considered all that before. We look 
before we leap ; but, wheu we resolve upon vaulting over 



KATE SELDEN. 491 

the fence, we clear it without looking back. You made up 
your mind that you loved Frederick better than anybody 
else, and resolved on the leap. You are not the first who 
has done such a thing. Why are you to make yourself 
unhappy, dear Miss Wyndham 1 I am sure I should be 
very happy if I was going to marry Frederick Baines. He 
is the dearest man in the world ! " 

There was something in this open and, to all seeming, 
candid avowal of affection which almost startled Emma, 
and made her look up at her companion. " You have known 
him long, I suppose ] " 

"About two years, but it does not require very long to 
discover sympathies and affinities ; we understood each other 
at once." 

" If I did not hope to be happy with him," said Emma, 
" I could not certainly have resolved to go against Mama's 
wishes and grieve them all so much ; but still I cannot help 
thinking about what they will suffer, and about what they 
will think of me." 

" They will think you foolish and wrong, as a matter of 
course; if your father and mother had made a runaway 
match in their own youth, it would make no difference ; they 
would vote it to be wrong in their daughter. That is the 
way of the world, or the way of parents, at least. But, tell 
me, what was their objection to Frederick ? His want of 
means, I suppose ] " 

" I don't know what Mama's objection to him was. 
I think she had heard something to his disadvantage, but 
she knew nothing of our engagement, and Papa knew 
scarcely anything at all about him. Captain Baines had 
not time to come forward before he was made aware that 
there was this strong prejudice against him on the part of 
my mother and brother. He had delayed a declaration on 
account of his uncle's illness." 

" What had that to say to it 1 " asked Lady Selden. 
" What uncle do vou mean ] " 



492 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

" His uncle in Yorkshire, from whom he had such large 
expectations. He did not think the moment propitious for 
talking to him about arrangements." 

Lady Selden laughed. " I should think," she said, " that 
very few people shared these ' large expectations.' So like 
Frederick ! " 

Emma felt very uncomfortable at this remark. What 
was so like Frederick? Expecting without solid grounds, 
or making the most of groundless expectations 1 " But 
surely. Lady Selden," she replied, "he was regarded as the 
expected heir ; and he so regarded himself. What do you 
know to the contrary *?" 

" Nothing at all, my dear ; it is all right, no doubt, or, 
rather, all wrong, for the naughty uncle has died without 
making Frederick his heir. I really never saw or spoke 
to this very bad man in all my life ; only I had not heard 
of the heirship in 2)etto ; that was all. But we won't regret 
it, for I do not think it would have suited Frederick to play 
the country squire. He is quite a town bird." 

" I suppose we shall hardly be able to choose our place of 
residence, as rich peoj)le mi^ht," said Emma. " Indeed, 
I believe it is already arranged for us, through the kindness 
of friends. I am too bewildered. Lady Selden, to say all 
the grateful things I ought." 

" My dear Miss Wyndham, we are delighted to be of any 
use in this romantic affair.' ' 

*' Where are we going now V inquired Emma. 

"To Norway. We sail straight for Christiania, where 
you will be married ; and we shall then leave you to make 
your wedding tour among the lovely scenery of that most 
lovely land. I quite envy you, and wish you would lend 
me your honeymoon. Well, I suppose I cannot expect that. 
We shall, of course, pick you up again when you have had 
enough of romance and roaming." 

" And take us to Hamburg ?" 



KATE SELDEN. 493 

" Yes, if you like it ; or anywhere else." 

" But I thought it was at Hamburg we were to live, 
and that Captain Baines was to have the consulship there 1 " 

"The consulship at Hamburg? Well, I do remember 
something of the sort, and that Augustus said he was sure 
lie could get him a situation as consul, if he could make up 
his mind to the kind of thing. But I fancy there must be 
pleasanter places than Hamburg." 

'•' Only it was to be Hamburg," insisted Emma in a perti- 
nacious tone, for she was becoaiing alarmed by Lady 
Selden's vague way of dealing with prospects. " I was told 
the particulars, and that there was only one condition — 
that the new consul must be married, as the last had been 
too gay." 

Kate Selden laughed again. " What a comical idea 
Did Frederick tell you this amusing fancy of the Ham- 
burgers? It is certainly a credit to their propriety for 
entertaining it, or to Frederick's ingenuity for inventing it." 

" Inventing it, Lady Selden ! " 

" Imagining it, then ; lovers are, you know, imaginative." 

" It was not Captain Baines, however," replied Emma, 
gravely, " who told me that precise circumstance j I re- 
member that it was Mr. Jardine." 

" O, Mr. Jardine ! " exclaimed Lady Selden ; " that horrid 
man ! I cannot think what has made Frederick take him 
up as he has." 

" He was his schoolfellow, and they have always been 
like brothers ; Mr. Jardine told me so himself." 

" Mr. Jardine, my dear, is a man who cannot speak 
a word of truth. I hope you are not going to take him 
into fraternal relationship also, and that Frederick has not 
asked him to be his best man on the happy occasion. 
Seriously speaking, he really ought to get rid of him, even if 
they were twin brothers instead of only chance acquaintance. 
But we had better begin our breakfast. I am sure you 



4D4 THE VVYNDUAM FAMILY. 

must have wanted it. Miss Wyndham. You have had 
nothing but that wretched cup of tea and a biscuit when 
you arriveii. I will ring for the cotfee and eggs. Augustus 
and Frederick must see after themselves ; they will soon be 
back, I dare sav. O, there, I see them coming up the 
lawn." 

It would be difficult to describe Emma's state of mind at 
this moment ; it was truly miserable; every word that Lady 
Selden had uttered had served to suggest nothing but the 
mt>st horrible doubts, and had thrown her into an agonizing 
state of mistrust. What was true, and what was not true, 
in all that had been told her ] Had she been the dupe of 
exaggerations and misrepresentations] or had her lover been 
the victim of prepostei-oiis illusions ? She endeavoured to 
recall to mind what she had heard fi*om himself directly, 
and what from Jan.line only. For the illusion about the 
heirship, if it had been an illusion — she w^ould not admit 
the dreadful idea of a lie — Frederick was certainly respon- 
sible ; but how strange that so dear a friend as La»iy Selden 
should be ignonint both of his previous hopes and of his 
recent disappointment ! What would she not have given 
now for the opportunity of inquiry, before taking the rash 
step to which she had committed herself^ and from which 
she could see no retreat ! She had neither friend nor adviser 
to whom to turn. The unreasoning i-eliance on the truth 
and honour of her lover, which had been so firm and im- 
movable while eiforts had been made to shake it, seemed 
to waver now at the merely casual and careless observations 
of one who certainly did not desire to depreciate his merits. 
She had told Gertrude that love made the heart impervious 
to unworthy suspicions ; but what had become of the love 
now ] She supposed she loved this man ; else, why was she 
thei^e ? — of course she loved him, but the sentiment of love 
had gone ; indeed, although she had not reflected upon 
the change, all sentiment had well-nigh vanished from the 



KATK SELDEV. 495 

moment that reality had begnn. from the moment that the 
£ital ring had been ylsuced on her £nger, and Baine« had 
flud, " You are now mj betrothed.* 

The poor girl had medianicallj mored to the breakfast- 
table at Ladj Sdden'e invitation, and snffiefed heutU to be 
helped to a eop of ooffiee. Then the genUemen ent^ed 
through the open window. " We hare sent the two 
Abigails and the luggage on board," said Lord Selden ; 
^ that is more than half the battle. We have now nothing 
but oomdves to take down to the boat when we have di^ 
patched our breakfast. What a heap of things there were, 
Kate ! One would Uiink we wexe going to found a eoUmj 
in Norwaj, We shall probaldj not want half of than. 
Your box, or ba^et, Mies Wyndh^m. does not octufj much 
space. c«tainlj." 

" We must »ee to all tlds when we reach Christtania^ 
said Ladj Selden. 

- I undeiiake the trausgeau, ranembor thal^'' eontinaed 
her husband. ''It shall be the best which that Aretie 
cafntal can furnish." Lord Selden was as fond oi mak ing 
presents as his wife was of receiving then. 

'^ It is very nice brang married and geiih^ everjUuBg 
new,'* observed Lady Selden — " but you have not touched 
your €gg^ MiflS Wyndham." 

Emma had only been able to drink haif of her cup of 
eoSae ; eataMtg teemed beyond her, although Baines had 
been whimpering some sweet eneoungements on the subject. 
^ She has gone throu^ so muefa,"^ he said. '' I have uo 
doubt she will revive whoct on boaid ; anxiety takes ava y 
appedie." 

"■ The soon» we get on board the hetto^,'' wnd L^rd 
Sdden ; ** and it will be easy there to repair aJD defideneies. 
The lockers of the Empre^, Miss Wyndham, are full <€ 
every manner of good things ; h» you will hare nothing to 
do bat to eat and drink half the day, and lie on deck, to 



496 THE WYXDHAM FAMILY. 

get an appetite, or a succession of appetites, the other 
half." 

" There is nothing like a yacht life," said Kate, " for an 
opportunity of enjoying the dolce far niente ; idleness posi- 
tively seems like activity ; and then you get such a supreme 
contempt for the landsman ; it is quite glorious. One feels 
very much as I can fancy the soaring bird or the gliding 
fish might feel about a miserable quadruped, which can only 
make its way step by step on the ground. And besides, you 
are so independent. The post cannot bring a disagreeable 
letter ; no tiresome visitor can call ; you escape from duties, 
proprieties, responsibilities, and everything else which is a 
bore in life." 

How Emma would but a short time since have entered 
con amove into Lady Selden's sentiments I How her heart 
would have bounded at a picture of careless enjoyment so 
thoroughly to her taste I But now all was joyless to her, and 
the pleasures set before her, like the Dead Sea fruit, turned 
into ashes. 

"• What was that 1 " said Kate, as a shadow came between 
them and the light ; " there is somebody in the verandah ! " 

The said body proceeded to step in unceremoniously 
through the open window. It belonged to a stoutish 
middle-aged man, of a medium height, who wore a decided 
and pugilistic air. In his hand he had a strong cane or, 
rather, stick, which he looked well able to use with effect ; 
and not unlikely to do so, for there he stood before the 
company, confronting them like a defiant bull. This appari- 
tion produced very various effects on the party. Emma 
concealed her face in her hands ; Captain Baines turned 
very white, and rose from his seat ; Kate Selden was rather 
inclined to laugh, and her husband disposed to be angry. 

" Who are you ]" he said to the unpleasant intruder. 

'• My name is John Sanders," was the prompt and bold 
reply. 



KATE HELVES. 407 

" Then, Mr. John SaudeiK, f would liave you to know thuj 
is my house, and, if you do not liike yourself off imme- 
diately, I will ring for my footman to put you out." 

** I think lie is a lunatic," whispered hn* wife. 

** I am g<uug to take myself off directly, Lord Helden, 
without your footman's help," replied Sanders ; '' but I shall 
take some one else along with me. That young lady is my 
niece ; I am come to claim her in her father's name ; she 
has been deceitfully allured from her home by that scoun- 
drel ; she is under age, and ha.s therefore no right to give 
herself away to this blackguard without her parents' consent." 

" I protest," exclaimed JJaines, ** against all that this man 
says, or may say, against me." 

"Who is he(" asked Selden. " Did you ever see him 
before ? " 

"Captain Baines knows me well, and T know him well 
too, and he knows I know hinj," said hJanders. 

"He in a Sicilian wine-mercliant," replied Baines, " who 
goes about the world taking away my character." 

" It is my uncle," sobbed Emma, still not daring to 
look up. 

" At any rate, Mr. Sanders, you are not Miss Wyndham's 
father," said Lord Selden, speaking now more calmly than 
before ; " nor do you seem to have any voucher to prove 
that you are empowered by him to interfere in this matter. 
You Can yourself, as you must know, claim no authority 
personally over the young lady. Whether she be of age I 
cannot say, but T know that she has placed herself under my 
protection, and I shall not suffer her to he removed from my 
ro<jf against her will." 

" 1 am not goin^j to discuss my credentials just now with 
you, my lord," said Sanders, in reply ; " what I claim is 
five' minutes' private conversation with my niece." 

" If she consents to speak to you, I cannot object to thit 
interview, of courte," said Lord Selden. 

2 K 



498 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

" Don't consent, don't consent, Emma," cried the Captain 
almost frantically, laying liis hand on her arm ; but she 
shrank from him. 

" Leave her alone, sir," said Sanders savagely. 

" All I must stipulate for," continued Lord Selden, '' is 
that there should be no compulsion used." 

^' My niece is not afraid of me," replied Sanders, softening 
his tone ; " she will never meet with anything but kindness 
and affection from me." 

Then Emma rose to accompany her uncle, and Lord 
Selden showed the two into an adjoining apartment. Emma 
threw herself on a chair, sobbing, unable to utter a word. 

'' Don't excite yourself, my dear child," said her uncle, 
sitting down by her ; " I am come to help and rescue you, 
not to say a word of reproach to you. I know that you 
have been led away against your better judgment." Then, 
taking her two hands, which she had removed from her 
face, in his, he said, " Emma, do you believe that I would tell 
alieV' 

" I do not believe you would." 

" As I have a soul to be saved, I would not tell a deli- 
berate falsehood, not even to prevent you taking that fellow 
for a husband, and there is little that I am not ready to do 
for such an object ; neither would I, as I hope for forgive- 
ness hereafter, malign a fellow-creature, were he my worst 
enemy." Then Sanders told his niece what we already 
know : how he had detected the Captain cheating at cards, 
and how the threat of exposure had driven him from Palermo. 
At the mention of cheating at cards, Emma shuddered, 
but remained silent. ^'Now, my dear Emma," continued 
the uncle, ''whether or no you think that what I tell you 
is decisive against this man's character, it must at least 
serve to stagger your opinion of him. You may think that 
I was possibly mistaken, and that, having no means of justi- 
fying himself, the Captain may have thought that the better 



KATE SELDEN. 499 

pait of valour was discretion, and accordingly took to his 
heels to avoid an unpleasant affair. Yet I think no man of 
honour or spirit would have acted thus, and you are not the 
girl I take you for, if such a man would find favour with 
you. And he behaved precisely in the same sneaking 
fashion the other day ; no sooner did he catch a sight of me 
than he bolted out of the house and disappeared. I told 
your mother he would not face me at dinner ; no more he 
dared ; then came the letter about the telegram, but, take 
my word for it, he never had a telegram and never went 
into Yorkshire, but hung about town, to carry out his 
wicked designs on you." 

" Then Mama knows all 1 " 

"Yes, I told her, and your brother Algernon, too." 

" A nd Algernon believed it ^ " 

"Yes, he believed it. I think, just at first, he did not 
wish to believe it, but when that note came off at once with 
the excuse, he reckoned that to be conclusive." 

" Why was not I told ? " said Emma, withdrawing her 
hands from those of her uncle. 

" I am sure I cannot say. For some reason or other, 
which I could not well understand, your mother wished to 
put off mentioning it to you or to Gertrude, and your father 
was not to hear a word of it. Had I known or suspected 
the state of things, I should have taken upon myself to 
inform you." 

" I will go back with you, uncle," said Emma, rising ; 
" I will go back at once ; please fetch my bonnet and 
parasol and a little straw basket I had in my hand, out 
of the breakfast-room. I do not want to see any one, and 
not him on any account. Don't let him come here ; I don't 
like being left for a minute ; " and the poor girl looked first 
to the door and then to the window with a terrified expres- 
sion. 

^' He won't come; trust me for that." Then Sanders' 
2k 2 



500 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

closed the window, and fastened it. " You can turn the 
key of the door while I am away, if you like ; I shall be 
back in a few minutes, but I must have a word or two 
with Lord Selden." 

Sanders returned to the breakfast-room, where an eager 
discussion seemed to be going on between Lord Selden and 
Baines. *' My niece wishes to return to her parents," said 
Sanders. 

" She does not, she cannot, wish it," exclaimed Baines. 
" I am grossly slandered ; I insist on seeing her ; she has 
promised to be my wife, and, if she desires to withdraw 
that promise, I must hear it from her own lips." 

" You cannot see her ; she refuses to see you ; she told 
me so ; if Lady Selden will be so good as to accompany me 
to the other room, she can vouch for this, and that my 
niece is willing and desirous to go home. And now, Lord 
Selden, I should much prefer to have to say nothing further 
about that chap ; but, as he says that I slander him, I will 
just tell you before his face that he lies. I saw him with 
these two eyes of mine, and they are pretty good ones, 
cheat at the card-table at Palermo; and the fellow left that 
place because I threatened to expose him if he did not make 
himself scarce." 

"It is false," cried Baines. "The man lost money to 
me at cards, and this was his revenge." 

" Just ask my friends, if ever I take a pack of cards in 
my hands," said Sanders, laughing, and collecting Emma's 
things. ^'Now, Lady Selden, would you kindly step this 
wayr' 

Kate rose and went with him ; she was not all discom- 
posed, and behaved well under the circumstances. " I am 
Tery sorry. Miss Wyndbam," she said, *' that you should 
have spent so uncomfortable a morning with us, and that 
anything to annoy you should have occurred. I hope you 
exonerate us from any evil intent." 



KATE SELDEN. 501 

Emma was unable to say much. How could she be 
expected to say much in such a false position 1 but she 
thanked Lady Selden for her kind intentions, and begged 
her to thank Lord Selden also. Then she took off the ring 
which had been the pledge between her and Baines, and 
handed it, with a significant look, to the lady. 

" I understand," said Kate, slipping it on her own finger 
with a certain air of satisfaction. " About your box, Miss 
Wyndham— a basket it is, I think — and the maid] what 
had I better do 1 They are on board already. Can you 
give me your address ? " 

** Better not to send off the box to us," said Sanders. 
" If you will kindly have it directed to Mrs. Wyndham, to 
be kept till called for, and send it on shore to the Ship 
Hotel, my sister will see after it. The maid we certainly 
don't want to have back." 

** I think," replied Kate, " we had better take her off to 
Norway ; this will prevent stories getting about ; maids 
cannot help gossipping. She seems a lively sort of girl, and 
ray own maid is very helpless and down-hearted at sea ; so 
I dare say I shall find her of use." 

"That will be quite a charity to us," said Sanders. 

Kate now shook hands with him. " You will excuse 
Augustus's roughness, will you not, Mr. Sanders ? he was 
taken by surprise." 

" To be sure, I will excuse it, as well as being called a 
lunatic by some one else." 

Lady Selden laughed. " Visitors in their right minds, 
you see, do not often bolt in at the window." 

" I was afraid your servants would deny me ; that is my 
excuse." 

Then Lady Selden kissed Emma, as if all had been as 
pleasant and comfortable as possible, and showed them a 
way out by which they could avoid passing in sight of the 
drawing-room window ; after which she went back to the 
two gentlemen. 



502 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

" But how the devil is one to prove a negative ? " the 
Captain was saying as she entered. " Suppose, Selden, a 
gentleman were to say that, walking down Piccadilly after 
you, he had seen you pick a pocket in the crowd, how 
would you prove that he had not seen you do so ? I say 
prove ; of course I do not mean that any one would believe 
such an assertion." 

"If he really was a gentleman," said Selden, " I should 
call him out ; and, if he was a snob, I should horsewhip 
him. I think I should horsewhip the fellow, anyhow." 

" That is easy to say, but how was I to horsewhip that 
big man before you all, and without a horsewhip at hand?" 

" Then I must have done something more than you did, 
Baines. I must have given him a box on the ear, or pulled 
his nose ; that's the way to give the lie to slander of that 
sort." 

" T cannot do such things in the presence of ladies," 
replied Baines. 

" Kate would have excused you, I am sure," said her 
husband. " I dare say she would even have admired your 
spirit." 

" Whoever really knows me will disbelieve every charge 
that could touch my honour," said Captain Baines, with an 
assumption of dignity. 

" It seems that your lady-love is not so incredulous, for 
she has left you in the lurch. Had you pulled her uncle's 
nose, perhaps you might have carried her off in triumph." 
Then Lord Selden went into the verandah to smoke his 
cigar. 

" I am left in the lurch by all, it seems," said Baines. 
" I'll be hanged if Augustus himself does not half suspect 
me of being a swindler." 

" 0, no ! it is his way ; he is annoyed, and the whole 
thing has made a disagreeable impression; it will wear 
off." 



KATE SELDEN. 303 

" Such impressions are very unpleasant when they regard 
oneself," replied Baines angrily. " I would rather avoid 
his company until the wearing-off process has been accom- 
plished. At any rate, I will not be his guest in the mean- 
time ; so will you, please, Lady Selden, have my portman- 
teau and carpet-bag sent to me on shore. I am going — 
Good-bye." 

Baines walked to the door as he said these last words. 
Lady Selden followed him. " Frederick," she said, " if 
Augustus thinks any evil of you, — I do not believe he does 
— but, supposing this were so, / do not ; and I will say 
more ; did I believe any evil of you, still I could not cease 
to love you. Love and friendship are little worth if they 
cannot stand a few shocks. Let me hear from you; you shall 
hear from me. Meanwhile, trust me, all w411 come straight, 
and, rely upon it, in me you have a friend, prool" against 
everything. Do you see that 1 and she pointed to the ring 
with its motto of Fidelite. 

" Keep it," said Baines. '' There is no woman, after all, 
like you, Kate." 

Kate Selden was mistaken in her hopes that things would 
come straight, or that Lord Selden's impressions would wear 
off. Her husband, it is true, had never suspected Baines of 
being a cheat ; but, now that he heard him accused, and saw 
him, as he thought, rather quail under the charge than repel 
it with proper spirit, he considered it to be just possible 
that he was guilty. Lord Selden was by no means straight- 
laced or nice in matters of morality, but he did not like a 
man for his intimate concerning whom such things could 
be even said with impunity. Now, when his wife afterward 
found that all her arts and persuasion failed to bring him 
round to her view, and that she had no chance of ever 
having her cavaliere servente restored to her, things were 
not so comfortable as heretofore between Kate Selden and 
her husband. 



504 THE WYXDHAM FAMILY. 

CHAPTER XLII. 

THE RETURN. 

All poor Emma's pride and hauglitiness seemed to have 
melted away. Shame and fear occupied their place, and, as 
she hurried along with her uncle, she clung close to him, 
and almost pulled him along at a faster pace than the suffi- 
ciently rapid one at which he was walking. 

" You will be out of breath," he said. " The more haste 
the worse speed, sometiuies." 

" Tell me," said Emma, " did Mama know it when you 
left 1 " 

" She knew nothing ; nobody knew anything, except 
Gertrude and Roper." 

*' Poor Gertrude ! " exclaimed Emma, unable to frame 
the question on her lips. 

Her uncle understood. *' She was better and calmer 
when I left her, and when I had comforted her by promis- 
ing I would bring you back ; and you see I am bringing 
you back. I thought I should bring the butterfly back. 
Come, cheer up a bit ! You have done a foolish, wrong thing, 
my poor child ; and now you are going to make amends as 
well as you can ; what more can any of us poor creatures 
do?" 

" But Papa and Mama — how can I look them in the 
face? Mama will perhaps forgive me, but Papa — never!" 

'• Tut, tut," said her uncle, " who's to forgive if a father 
don't forgive ? He's not a father if he don't forgive ; and 
I shall tell him so. He'll be a little queer at first, I dare 
say ; you must expect him to be queer, and you must bear 
that. I don't think your mother will be even queer. She 
is too doatingly fond of you. Roper was not to tell her 
anything so long as she could keep her in the dark ; so she 



THE RETURN. 505 

will be put out of her misery very soon, I expect ; and I 
am in great hopes the servants may know nothing of your 
absence at all. I have purloined your father's latch-key ; 
so we will slip in unobserved." 

Emma looked up at him gratefully, but her heart was 
too full to say anything. This, then, was the man she had 
so scorned and contemned ; of whom she had even presumed 
to be ashamed — he so good and worthy, she so foolish, so 
frail, so perverse. He was not ashamed of her now that 
she had disgraced herself, but had come to seek her, to save 
her, to rescue her from degradation, and to shield her even 
from the merited reproach she had incurred. Emma had 
received a lesson, and it was not lost upon her. 

It was not yet ten o'clock when the uncle and niece 
reached Berkeley Square. " Remember, Emma," he said^ 
" should any of the servants see you by chance as you come 
in, don't look at all flustered, but behave just as if we had 
walked out quietly and come in again together, and go 
straight up to Gertrude's room." 

Emma promised she would command herself; she had 
indeed every interest to do so. None of the household, 
however, observed their entrance. On the landing-place of 
the bed-room floor they met Roper near Mrs. Wyndham's 
door. When she saw her young lady she clasped her hands, 
and murmured, " Thank God ! " Then Sanders opened 
Gertrude's door. " All right," he said softly ; " here she is ; 
keep very quiet ; I am going to tell Mama." 

He left the two sisters in each other's arms, and then 
spoke a word to Roper outside. 

" Yes, sir, she knows it ; I couldn't keep it any longer 
from her, though she had not left her room, for, as I had to 
pretend downstairs that Miss Gertrude was very ill, Mr. 
Bowles thought she ought to be told, and the doctor sent 
for ; and so he has been sent for now. My lady went 
into 'sterics first, but she's got calmer; for I assured her 



506 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

you hoped to overtake them." Then Roper knocked 
softly. 

" Just say T am here, and all safe and right ; prevent 
her screaming, if you can." 

" She won't scream, for fear of waking Mr. Wyndham. 
He'd a bad night, and is dozing on." Then Roper did as 
directed, and Sanders followed close on her steps. 

Poor Mrs. Wyndham ! The joyful relief had come so 
rapidly on the crushing blow she had received, that she 
could scarcely utter an intelligible sentence at first. Sanders 
sat down by her, and allowed her time to collect herself. 
" And where is she *? where is she ? " said his sister. 

" She would have come at once to beg your forgiveness, 
poor thing ; but I said No, you had both of you better be 
calmer first ; so I popped her in, to cry a bit with her sister, 
and let you have your cry out with me." 

" John, you have been our good angel ! What can I 
say?" 

" Only that you forgive the poor erring sheep. Let me 
tell her that." 

" Forgive her ! God knows if I am not willing to forgive 
her ! She is my own child, and she has come back to my 
arms." 

" God bless you, Beatrice ; I knew you would say that. 
And now, you see, not a soul in the house knows anything 
but Roper, and she's sure to be mum ; the afi'air can be 
hushed up, and never get abroad, I hope. The Seldens have 
gone to Norway, and carried off that precious baggage, 
Rachel. Something may ooze out, of course ; but we shan't 
be brought to shame, and may make believe we don't even 
know of the reports, if reports there should be." 

Pei'haps we may be able to keep it from him,'^ said Mrs. 
Wyndham, signing with her head towards the bedroom 
where the unconscious father was still lying asleep. 

" No, Beatrice ; he ought to know, even supposing we 



THE RETURN, 507 

were certain he would never otherwise discover it ; and of 
that we can be far from certain." 

" I dread telling him/' replied his sister. " He will be 
very hard at first, I know." 

" I will tell him," said Sanders ; " he will hear reason 
more coolly from me. He will think you are a fond mother 
who excuses everything from blind affection ; so your 
entreaties would only anger him at present. I can manage 
matters, I am pretty sure. I will get him to see her at 
once ; he will be as ungracious as possible in his forgiveness, 
I have no doubt ; but, if we can gain that point, we shall 
have gained all ; the rest will come in time. Let him doze 
on some minutes longer ; and then I will go for Emma." 
Sanders, in a few words, now related his morning's work, 
dwelling much on the fact that his poor niece was right glad, 
he was sure, to get away from her deceiver, who had told 
all manner of lies, he well knew, to entrap her. " We shall 
know all particalai'S after a bit, but she must not be ques- 
tioned just yet." After saying which, he returned to the 
sisters. 

" Your mother is longing to set eyes on you, Emma," he 
said ; but he had scarcely entered the room before the two 
girls had rushed to him. Gertrude threw her arms fondly 
round his neck, and Emma cast herself at his feet, bathed 
in tears, embracing his knees. 

"What have I done to deserve this from you?" she 
exclaimed, sobbing. " I have done everything to make me 
undeserv^ing of your love." 

" What nonsense about deserving, my dear girl ! " said 
the good uncle, stooping to raise her, his own honest eyes 
now full of tears also. " Are you not my own flesh and blood, 
my sister's child ? That's enough to deserve love from me ; 
and I must be worse than a Turk or an infidel if T didn't 
love you." He had unwound Gertrude's arms from his 
neck, scarcely bestowing any attention on her ; it was the 



508 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

returning prodigal, the one who had been lost and was 
found again, that had all the overflowings of his tenderness, 
as he folded her to his heart in one long affectionate 
embrace J such as he had never bestowed even on her blame- 
less sister. But Gertrude was not jealous. It was all joy 
to her. 

Then Sanders took Emma to her mother and, leaving 
them together, went to acquit himself of the unpleasant 
task of letting the father know what had happened, and 
engaging him to pardon the offender. It was a very un- 
pleasant task. Percy Wyndham had no previous knowledge 
or suspicion to lead him to apprehend the possibility of such 
an event as had now to be broken to him, and, cautiously 
as Sanders went to work, and careful as he was to exonerate 
his sister, so far as he could, from blame or imprudence, the 
first outbreak of Wyndham's wrath was directed against her. 
This worthless fellow had been repeatedly invited, and had 
been made much of and petted by his wife, who ought to 
have known better, while he had been kept in the dark — he, 
the father, who ought to be master in his own house ; and 
a great deal more to the same effect. Sanders gave him 
his head, and seldom interrupted him. You have a great 
advantage over a person who is in bed, and who cannot make 
his escape from you when your turn to speak comes ; so 
Sanders could afford to wait patiently for his turn. The 
worst of it was, that whatever served to excuse his sister on 
the plea of ignorance of what had been going on threw the 
greater blame on Emma ; Sanders had, therefore, a hard 
card to play. " You see," he said, " this fellow confidently 
asserted that he had a rich uncle, who had promised to 
make him his heir, and, when he proposed for the poor 
child, he persuaded her that he was only deferring speaking 
to you until his uncle was convalescent and he could 
acquaint him with his intentions. Then he made believe 
that the uncle had disinherited him, and threw himself on 
her generosity." 



THE RETURN. 509 

" Stuff and nonsense ! " said Percy. 

" Well, of course it was worse than stuff and nonsense," 
replied Sanders, — " it was all a pack of lies ; but young 
women, when they have got a fancy in their heads, are 
foolish, you know, and will believe a great deal." 

" They are foolish, you may say that ; and older women 
are just as bad." 

" She was foolish, of course, and did very wrong ; she 
knows she did, and does not say a word to defend herself, 
which is a better sign of penitence than a thousand pro- 
testations." 

" She may well be penitent after doing all she could to 
break our hearts. What has she had to complain ofl 
Was ever a daughter treated more kindly 1 She is an 
ungrateful " 

" Stop, Wyndham, don't call your child hard names ; she 
is your child, after all, and you must forgive her," 

" I can't forgive her." 

" Then all I can say is, that you will not get forgiveness 
yourself, and you will go to hell j that is the long and the 
short of it. Did you never do a wrong thing yourself, Wynd- 
ham 1 and, if you never did up to this time, this piece of 
unforgiveness would be quite enough to send you there." 

'* Come, come, Sanders, I can stand a good deal from you, 
but I will not be preached to like that, and told I am on 
the road to perdition because I feel as any father would feel 
who has just heard what I have heard. I ain not going to 
turn my daughter out of doors, but that is all the mercy 
she has any right to expect from me." 

" She does not stand on rights ; the poor thing only begs 
to be forgiven ; she begs you to see and forgive her," 

"I cannot see her," replied Percy doggedly, turning 
himself round to the other side in his bed. '^ She has dis- 
graced me." 

" Now, Wyndham, listen to me. By refusing to see 



510 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

her, and betraying, as you will do, to your servants by your 
behaviour to her, that she has done something which you 
deem disgraceful, you will yourself bring this disgrace on 
your own head and hers. At present, no one knows any- 
thing but Roper, who is safe. Let things go on as usual, 
and no suspicion will arise." Wyndham made no reply. 
"T hear the doctor's knock; he has just arrived," continued 
Sanders. " He has come to see poor Gertrude ; you will 
make her quite ill if you will not see Emma ; I shall go 
and fetch her." Still Wyndham was silent. So Sanders 
went for his niece. He found her alone in her mother's 
dressing-room, Mrs. Wyndham having gone down to speak 
to the doctor. "Emma," he said, " you must not expect 
your father to say much ; perhaps he will say nothing at 
all. Do you only say that you are come to beg his forgive- 
ness ; he will forgive you, if not this minute, yet after a 
bit, but I don't think he will say anything harsh to you ; 
and, when you are begging his pardon, beg pardon much 
more earnestly in your heart, my dear child, of One whom 
ic must grieve you far more to have offended. Say in- 
wardly, ' Father, I have sinned against Heaven and before 
thee.' Your Heavenly Father will forgive you on the 
spot, though your earthly father may take a little time 
about it ; so do not sorrow or chafe about that, and bear a 
cold face for a short time, thinking of the joy in Heaven, 
and the best robe and the ring and the fatted calf. Now, 
come along." 

Emma suffered herself to be led like a lamb into the 
bedroom. Her father was still in the position in which 
Sanders had left him, rolled round in the bed-clothes, with 
averted face. Emma knelt down on the other side. 
*' Papa," she said in a faltering voice — no answer — then 
" Father " in a more plaintive tone. The father still was 
silent, and then the poor girl said out loud what her uncle 
had suggested to her to say in her heart : " Father, I have 



THE RETURN. 511 

sinned against Heaven and before thee ; " after which her 
face sank on the bed with a sob of anguish. 

" Say no more about it, Emma," said her father ; '' it 
will make me il]. You had better go to your mother." 

" He called you by your name ; it's all right ; you are 
forgiven," said the uncle cheerily, after he had led the 
weeping girl back to the dressing-room, hardly knowing 
whether her father had meant or no to bestow his pardon. 

Whatever he may have meant, Percy Wyndham cer- 
tainly never said another syllable to his daughter on the 
subject of that morning's misadventure. Perhaps she was 
as much indebted to his love of ease and dislike of worry 
for her prompt forgiveness as to any softness of heart he 
might 23ossess. Yet, to do him justice, Wyndham was not 
a hard man, and was disposed to kindness and good-nature 
in his family circle and towards all who came into proximate 
connection with him. So Emma's offence was condoned or 
ignored, and she had her kiss along with the rest from her 
father when his family started for Gorsham. With 
Sanders, who set off for Warwickshire that day, Wyndham 
parted most cordially, notwithstanding his unpolite plain 
speaking when he had paid him that visit in bed a few 
hours previously. 

No suspicion had been aroused in the house. Emma's 
absence had entirely escaped notice ; she made her appear- 
ance with her mother at breakfast towards eleven o'clock, 
and, if she looked less bright than usual, this appeared to 
be only the natural result of her uneasiness respecting her 
sister, in attendance upon whom she was supposed to have 
been up to the time of the doctor's arrival. Then Roper 
went down and said that Dr. Hawes was of opinion that 
Miss Gertrude would be better up, and that change of air 
would do her good. Two things only had struck the house- 
hold as strange : the one was that Mr. Sanders had gone to 
Mass in the morning without shaving; the other, that 



512 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

Kacliel Somers had disappeared before breakfast and bad 
never wished any one Good-bye ; but Roper disposed of 
both mysteries in an easy way. *' Law ! Mr. Sanders don't 
care about his appearance. I suppose he was a bit late, 
and would rather go unshaved and unwashed, or what you 
please, than miss any scrap of his devotions." As for 
"Rachel, Mrs. Roper said she knew the girl intended to go 
very early. *' And, besides," she added, " I had a sort of 
tiff with her late last night ; so that put her out, I'll 
engage, and sent her off to get her breakfast with her sister, 
who is welcome to her as far as I'm concerned" — an account 
of the matter which was, it musC be confessed, to use a mild 
term, improvised. 

As respected the general public, very little transpired. A 
paragraph appeared in one of the London newspapers 
which, though it gave no names and spoke enigmatically, 
yet to all who were acquainted with the transaction plainly 
referred to the attempted elopement. Foi'tunately Mr. 
Wyndham never saw it. His wife did see it at Gorsham, 
for the newspaper which contained it was the one taken by 
Lady Ellerton, who read the passage out loud in a croaking 
voice, making sundry speculations as to who the parties 
could be. Of course Mrs. Wyndham had not the least 
idea ; her daughters were, fortunately, neither of them in 
the room at the time, and she took care to keep the news- 
paper out of their reach until it was taken away by the 
servants — no very diflScult task, as the taste for newspapers 
is not often very strong in young ladies ; and Mrs. Wynd- 
ham's young ladies in particular }iad not until lately con- 
sidered themselves as free to peruse them, so had never 
acquired the habit ; the liberty now tacitly accorded to 
them was therefore little valued and seldom used. The 
newspapers were for Papa and Mama, and they heard quite 
as much of their contents in the way of extract as they 
cared very ranch to hear ; sometimes rather more. 



THE RETURN. 513 

The dreaded visit to Gorsham was to poor Emma a 
season of rest and refreshment. Gertrude's affection had 
never been so sweet to her as in this her day of trouble. She 
was one who could never ruffle, or offend, or wound the 
sorest spirit, and had an instinctive tact on such occasions 
which love combined with a child-like humility can alone 
impart. So genuine, indeed, was that humility that 1 
believe she took three parts of the blame of Emma's fault 
to herself. As for Mrs. Wyndham, she had not a word of 
reproach for her daughter ; and, indeed, she had so much 
love to spare for Emma, that her misdemeanour had made 
no appreciable impression on the stock. Besides, Mrs. 
Wyndham, on the one hand, was wanting in that keen sen- 
sitiveness which belongs to delicate natures, and, on the 
other hand, was, from her love for her children, most curious 
to know the least incidents which in any way affected them. 
Accordingly, when she had recovered the first shock, she 
became very inquisitive to learn all details about an 
affair to which other mothers might have felt it painful 
to allude ; and no sooner did she think that Emma was 
able to bear the matter being talked over than she had 
fifty questions to ask with intensest interest, deriving even 
a species of pleasure from having the whole story narrated 
to her ; a pleasure which would be quite unintelligible to 
many minds. 

Emma had lost nothing of her mother's good graces, it 
was plain ; conscious that it was so^ and having satisfied to 
the full extent all reasonable curiosity, she one day ventured 
to beg that no further reference might be made to the sub- 
ject. " I do not wish," she said, " to forget my fault — that 
I shall ever bear in mind ; but I wish to forget him, and 
obliterate the remembrance of him from my mind, as of 
a painful and distressing dream." 

Her mother kissed her, and promised to distress her no 
further by any allusion to the past, adding, " As respects 

2l 



514 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

your fault, dearest, I consider you were more sinned against 
than sinning," — an indulgent verdict which Emma's con- 
science would hardly allow her to endorse. 

The mysterious parsigTaph with refereuce to an " incident 
in high life" which T have just mentioned, attracted the 
less attention on account of the immediate dissolution of 
Parliament with all its attendant stirring interests, which 
threw all fashionable gossip into the shade. The subject of 
the coming elections took complete possession of men's and 
women's minds, and of no one's mind more fully than that of 
Mr. Wyndham, who, as soon as Parliament was dissolved, 
after running down to see his family at the seaside, whither 
they had then removed, and to talk over domestic aiTange- 
ments with his wife, took his road to Whittlebury. 



CHAPTER XLIIL 

THE LOST ONE FOUND. 

The business which had detained Madame d'Hericourt in 
London, to which allusion has been made more than once, 
was not concluded as soon as she expected. Another fort- 
night, to the disappointment of both mother and daughter, 
had to be spent in London. At this juncture, an eminent 
priest, noted fo^ his skill in spiritual direction, was about 
to give a retreat to ladies, and a rich Catholic had offered the 
use of her large house in Belgravia, to receive as many as it 
could suitably accommodate, so as to enable them to follow 
the exercises with the advantages of entire seclusion fi'om 
the world, and of a species of temporary religious rule pre- 
siding over the arrangements of the day. JMadame d'Heri- 
court thought that this would be a good opportunity, not to 



THE LOST ONE FOUND. 515 

be neglected, for her daughter Anne to ascertain the state 
of life to which God called her. She was to have made a 
retreat with this view in Paris, but the prolongation of their 
stay in England rendered it desirable that further delay 
should be avoided. Madame d'Hericourt was also verv alad 
that Anne should be entirely separated from her while thus 
engaged — she would make her own retreat after her return 
to France. Anne accordingly was admitted among the 
boarders in Lady Mary Godwin's house ; and her mother 
was not so much as to see her for the ten days during which 
she was to be its inmate. 

Madame d'Hericourt remained, therefore, with Pauline 
and the cats, praying much for divine light to guide her 
daughter, and enlivened occasionally by a visit from Eustace 
Ptochfort. One day, when they were, as usual, alone 
together, Eustace said, " I wish so much you could come 
and see a very interesting patient in the hospital. She has 
been suflfering from a complicated attack of inflammation of 
the lungs and brain-fever, and her life until these last two 
days has been despaired of, her recovery being even now 
more than doubtful. She was discovered some days ago, 
late one evening, in a state of insensibility in the Park, 
lying on the ground. It was a very rainy evening, which 
perhaps you may recollect, rather more than ten days ago. 
One of the park-keepers found her ; she was near a bench, 
from which it was supposed she had fallen in a swoon. She 
was very plainly but respectably dressed, and had a sove- 
reign, a shilling, and a few pence in her pocket ; so she was 
not a pauper ; but there was no clue whatsoever as to who 
she w^as, except that she was evidently a Catholic, from the 
crucifix and the scapular w hich she wore about her, as well as 
from a small missal and a book of devotions in her basket. 
The book of devotions was French, but the fly-leaf was 
wanting as well as in the missal. She was for some days quite 
unable to reply to any questions ; fever ran high, and she 
2 L 2 



516 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

was in a delirious state. At this time I heard of her from 
Mr. Pierpoint, who had been exerting himself to find out, 
if possible, who she was. He made inquiries of the priests 
attached to different churches, and the only apparent trace 
of her he could find was at the Jesuits' house in Hill Street. 
The porter said that a person answering her description had 
called twice on the very day she was found in the Park, 
and inquired for one of the Fathers who happened to 
be out both times. She left no name, but perhaps the 
Father might recognize the description ; he was, however, 
now on the continent. 

" So I went to see her," continued Eustace, " and was 
much struck by her appearance, which had something in it 
not of this earth. She was still light-headed, and took little 
notice of surrounding objects. "When her eyes were open, 
which are of a deep blue, they were usually turned up- 
wards, almost as if gazing at something visible to them. 
When she rambled in mind, she spoke only of divine things; 
sometimes she would utter ejaculatory prayers and aspira- 
tions of love to the Sacred Heart ; sometimes she would go 
on talking incoherently, apparently addressing either her 
guardian angel or our Lady. For the last day or two she 
has seemed more alive to things around her, but is as yet 
unable to give any account of herself ; and the doctor does 
not wish her to be questioned much while the brain is in 
so weak a state. A couple of days ago — she always seems 
pleased to see me — I asked her what her name was. She 
said she could not remember, only she knew it was trans- 
posed, adding, ' Do you think that wrong ? ' She told me 
also she was a servant, but could not recollect what her 
mistress's name was. On a previous day she had said she 
wished to see a priest. I told her the priest had been to 
see her several times, but she had been too ill to speak to 
him ; I also told her she had been anointed. When I said 
this she looked upwards with an angelic smile, and said. 



THE LOST ONE FOUND. 517 

* The prayer of faith will save the sick man, and the Lord 
shall raise him uj) ; and if iie be in sins, they shall be 
forgiven him. My sins, I hope, are forgiven, but the Lord 
will not raise me from this bed.' " 

"Do you think she is dying]" asked Madame d'H^ri- 
court, who was deeply interested by Eustace's account. 

"]Sot exactly dying; still I doubt whether she has 
strength to rally ; but I have not quite finished my story. 
I was there to-day, and found her more fit for conversation ; 
she told me she had remembered her mistress's name, and 
that it was Wyndham. Did she, I asked, live in Berkeley 
Square 1 ' Yes,' she replied, ' it was a very little way 
from the church/ and added, ' It is a long time now since 
I have been there.' I believe she meant since she had been 
at the church. This Mrs. Wyndham is, of course, your 
friend ; strange, is it not 1 " 

" The Wyndhams have left London," replied Madame 
d'Hericourt, "but we shall now find out everything. I have 
a sort of recollection that I heard the girls speak of their 
cook as being a very devout person. It must be her ; but 
how odd that she should have been found in so desolate 
a state ! I will write to Mrs. Wyndham, I have her 
address; but I should like to go to the hospital first, and 
see this poor woman ; indeed, I am quite anxious any way 
to see her." 

" It is too late to-day," said Eustace ; "1 will call for you 
to-morrow morning. This delay will also give the patient 
a little more time to regain some strength." 

He came on the morrow at the appointed hour, and 
they went together to the hospital. At the door they met 
Mr. Pierpoint coming out. He told them that the sick 
woman was now perfectly collected, and had made her 
confession ; the priest having been gone about an hour. 
Then the two were shown into the ward in which the 
patient lay. Eustace was preceding Madame d'Hericourt, 



518 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

and, as they approached the bed, he turned back towards 
his companion and whispered, pointing to the pallet, " See, 
she is in the state of recollection I described to you." 

Tyrell was sitting up in her bed, partially propped by, 
but not reclining on, the pillows behind her. An ebony 
crucifix hung round her neck ; her hands were clasped and 
resting on the bed ; her eyes raised, as if fixed on some object 
above. A smile was on her face, which was of a transparent 
whiteness, and her appearance was altogether of such a 
saintly character that it might well have impressed any 
beholder ; but Eustace was not prepared for the effect pro- 
duced on Madame d'Hericourt. She placed her hand on 
his arm, as if to support herself, and he felt it tremble. 
He looked round, but Madame d'Hericourt had let drop over 
her face a thick veil which she wore, and which nearly con- 
cealed her features. " Sj^eak to her," she whispered ; and 
Eustace, comprehending what he was expected to do, 
stepped forward. He touched the patient's hand, and then 
she lowered her eyes and looked at him. 

" I'm much better to-day," she said, " and can understand 

and reply to everything which is said. Father came, 

and I am so happy ! To-morrow I shall be still happier." 

" He will give you communion ?" Tyrell smiled, and what 
a smile it was ! " A lady has come to see }'0u," added 
Eustace. " She is a good Catholic, and wishes to ascertain 
if she could serve you in any way. She knows Mrs. Wjnd- 
ham, and will write to her." 

" It is very kind of her," said Tyrell, "but I do not wish 
any one to write about me. I have no claim on Mrs. Wynd- 
ham. Should I ever rise from this bed, and be able to 
work again, then I should like to have her testimonial to 
my character, that I may be received into the House of 
Mercy ; but that will not be. I am going — I am going 
gently — but it is over." 

Eustace moved a chair to the bedside for Madame d'Heri- 



THE LOST ONE FOUND. 519 

conrt, who had come nearer, but she drew it further back, 
so as to seat herself almost behind the sick woman. " You 
have no relations 1 " she asked, after a short pause, and in a 
very low voice. 

" None," replied Tyrell, " but that is well ; there will be 
no one to weep for me." 

" Are you sure you have none 1 Had you ever a brother 
or a sister ? " 

" One sister — yes, but God has taken her long ago. Her 
spirit is with Him, though her body never rested in a quiet 
grave ; and no holy water was ever sprinkled over it. Other 
waters, the waters of the great deep, rolled over her; but 
when the archangel's trumpet shall sound, the sea shall 
give up its dead." 

" She was drowned ? Where ? " 

" On her way back from the West Indies." 

" Her name was Sablon, was it not ] " asked Madame 
d'Hericourt, dropping her voice almost into a whisper. 

Tyrell made a slight start. " My God ! " she exclaimed, 
" what years since I have heard that name ! " 

"And perhaps she is not dead," continued Madame 
d'Hericourt ; " but I fear to agitate you." 

" No, you will not agitate me," replied Tyrell. " If she 
is dead, I bless God, whose Face I believe she beholds in 
glory ; and if she be not indeed dead, then I bless Him 
that she has lived to add some more jewels to her crown." 

" She lives, I am certain," said Madame d'Hericourt ; 
" I know her well." 

*' Come where I can see you," replied Tyrell, very calmly 
" it is Pauline's voice ; I believe you are yourself my 
sister." 

'* My own lost Anne ! " exclaimed Madame d'Hericourt, 
as she threw her arms i^ound her. She dreaded almost to 
speak or to give way to the swelling joy of her heart ; but 
the unutterable calm of Anne Rytell, whom we will now 



520 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

call by her real name, reassured her. To Madame d'Heri- 
court the meeting was, in fact, more overwhelming and 
exciting than it was to Anne ; not from want of love or of 
tenderness, but because, severed from all earthly ties, she 
believed herself to be hovering ready for departure on the 
borders of the grave. It was joy, it is ti-ue, to press her 
loved sister once more to her heart in this world, but she 
had been going, as she hoped, to be united inseparably to 
her before the throne of God. Now there was to be a 
fresh parting. But to Pauline the mysterious loss of her 
sister had been the one sad thought of years. She had 
encountered her share of sorrows ; she had parted with 
a beloved husband — that, it is true, had been the severest 
blow she had experienced in all her life — but she had 
witnessed his happy Christian end, the departure, at once 
humble and triumphant, of his spirit purified by suffering ; 
and he had been laid in his peaceful grave with the rites 
and benedictions of Holy Church ; but the loss of her sister 
Anne, though not personally so great a bereavement to her, 
had a peculiar bitterness about it, owing to the cloud and 
the mystery which enveloped it. What had become of her ? 
Was she dead ] and, if so, when and w^here did she die 1 
Was she to pray for her as one amongst the living or the 
dead ] She had never put on mourning for her, but neither 
had the days of mourning ever ended. Thus the memory of 
her lost sister had ever hung like a shadow over her soul, 
even in the days of her happiness, and in the days of her 
sorrow had helped to deepen it. And now the veil was 
raised, and the lost one found ! It was almost more than 
she seemed able to bear. 

" To find you at last," she murmured ; " and to find you 
here in such an abandoned condition ! " 

" You have found me," replied her sister, " where I 
wished to be. I have often prayed that I might die in the 
common hospital, and God has granted my desire." 



THE LOST ONE FOUND. 521 

" He has accepted your will to die amongst Clirist's poor. 
But now, dearest Anne, whether it be to live or to die, you 
must come to me ; that is, when you can be moved." Anne 
would have made some remonstrance and begged to be left 
where she was, but her sister almost stopped her mouth 
by urging that such a resolution would be both unreason- 
able and unkind. "Besides," she added, "think how many 
more spiritual advantages you will enjoy under my roof. 
These are not to be refused when they may be had." 

And Anne did not refuse ; she was in the hands of 
Providence always, and He who had willed that they should 
meet once more, willed perhaps that she should do as her 
sister desired. If, therefore, it should be judged that she 
was fit to be moved, she agreed that so it should be. The 
doctor considered that in a couple of days this might be 
effected without danger, and the patient was accordingly 
transferred to Madame d'Hericourt's house in Upper 
Grosvenor Street. She had now surmounted the first 
danger, that which attended the acute form of the illness 
under which she had suffered, but she was sinking surely, 
though almost painlessly, from the effects. Her frame, 
already fragile and wasted, had not possessed the vitality 
required for restoration ; the sentence of death was clearly 
on her, and her days were numbered. Those days, however, 
were peaceful, and they were precious, and on some there 
was even that temporary revival which we often witness in 
persons who are really in a rapid decline. There was much 
to tell on each side. One day, when Madame d'Hericourt 
was seated by the bed-side of her sister, who had never 
regained sufficient strength to leave it, she asked her why 
she did not enter religion in the convent to which she had 
succeeded in tracing her, and the Superioress of which had 
not concealed the fact that she was under a promise of 
secrecy concerning her destination. 

" I will tell you frankly," replied Anne By tell. " I did 



522 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

not enter religion because I did not believe tbat T had a 
vocation to religion. I was treated with the greatest kind- 
ness by the Superioress, and, although T was penniless, I 
believe she would have admitted me even as a choir nun ; 
at any rate it was open to me to remain as a lay-sister." 

'' I should have thought that that would have satisfied 
all your highest as well as humblest aspirations." 

" It might, doubtless, have satisfied my desires, and would 
have been far more conformable to my inclinations than the 
life I chose, that of domestic service. I considered, how- 
ever, that Providence had left me perfectly free to embrace 
this life, by taking away from me every relative and friend ; 
there was no one whom I could grieve or upon whom I 
could inflict mortification by such a course. I had only 
myself to consider. Remember, I never doubted but that 
you perished in that shipwreck ; and your change of name 
has always prevented me from discovering my mistake. 
The name of Hericourt was quite strange to me, so that, 
although I frequently heard you mentioned at Mrs. "Wynd- 
ham's, it awakened no suspicion in my mind." 

" Emile," said her sister, " inherited the marquisate from 
a distant cousin, who had very recently lost his son. We 
had never expected that the property would come to us." 

'^ Well, finding myself alone and friendless, with only 
two alternatives before me, religion or a life of toil to ei/'n 
my bread, and after making it the subject of prayer, and 
of spiritual advice, I chose the latter ; and in particular I 
chose service. A special vocation to that state, — I mean such 
a one as renders it a matter of voluntary election, — may be 
rare, but there is such a vocation, and it has' existed in all 
ages of the Church. I believed that it was to this lower 
state, rather than to that of religion, that I was interiorly 
called, and that Providence had, by making the choice 
almost one of necessity to me in the absence of a religious 
vocation, sanctioned its adoption. And I think I can see 



THE LOST ONE FOUND. 523 

reasons for this vocation. Pauline, God alone knows what 
■was the pride of my heart ; it was not a vulgar pride, so did 
not attract notice, but it was all the subtler and more sinful. 
The love of what was honourable and decorous, which in 
me was pushed to an extreme, an extravagant regard for the 
esteem of those whom I valued, a fastidiousness, a shrinking 
from anything that was physically or mentally repugnant 
to me — so adverse to the sj^irit of a disciple of the Cross — 
all called for severe treatment. Add to these an inveterate 
habit of introversion, which made me a continual spectacle 
to myself, a habit fostered by the possession of certain 
talents which attracted to me, whether I would or not, an 
interest which flattered my taste when it did not feed my 
vanity, and you may well imagine what a work was needed 
to accomplish that death to self to which I felt unmis- 
takably called." 

" I should have thought," observed Madame d'Hericourt, 
" that in religion you would have found the highest and 
the most perfect school in which to learn humility, obedi- 
ence, patience, and self-abnegation." 

*' I. know well that the religious state is the highest and 
the most perfect," replied Anne, " but these things are 
relative ; for me it might not be the most perfect school, 
because neither the roughest nor the hardest. The spouse 
of Christ may have left a very exalted station to place her- 
self on a level with others of lower condition ; she has cast 
away all worldly ties, all the memories of former greatness 
and former luxury, to become poor and abject in the House 
of God. I know all this. But the consecrated spouse of 
Christ is still an honoured person, honoured in, and even 
for, her very abasement. Abasement, be it ever so deep, is 
not degradation. It was degradation, not abasement or 
humiliation, which I dreaded and even abhorred. And 
again, she is not desolate ; she is fortified and consoled by 
her association with others who have had the same call, 



524 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

and who, though they never flatter each other nor allow 
their love to exhibit itself in caresses such as those of which 
seculars are prodigal, yet they do love each other dearly 
and respect each other sincerely. You are mortified and 
humbled, it is true, in religion, but the mortification and 
the humiliation are medicinal remedies administered by the 
hand of love^, and, hard as they may be to bear, the recol- 
lection of their object must support the courage and soften 
the difficulties of her who undergoes the probation. But 
in service it is otherwise, far otherwise. You receive 
mortifications and humiliations, not from the hand of love, 
but from the pride, the ill-temper, and not seldom from 
what is worse, the profound indifference and disregard of 
those who are your appointed superiors. Obedience and 
patience have often little to sweeten them, and there is a 
constant call upon you for a self-abnegation which is not, I 
will not say appreciated, but frequently not so much as 
noticed, by those whose caprice or selfishness impose it on 
you. And if these be the trials which await those who 
have been brought up in a humble liue of life, and which 
even to them are often very hard to bear, what must they 
be to one who has been used to all the delicate regards and 
consideration of a higher class ? Moreover, she has not the 
comforts and alleviations which other servants, born to 
their state, possess. She consorts daily with those whose 
society is rather an addition to her trial than a relief. She 
is truly alone. I am now, my dear Pauline, about to 
depart, and can speak of myself almost as another person. 
I will tell you, therefore, that none can conceive what I 
have endured from this trial alone. Oh, it was this which 
was the real galling trial to my soul, which by nature 
dwelt proudly in its own intellectual and imaginative con- 
ceptions, which was full of natural repugnances, and loathed 
association with all that was gross or common ! The evil 
tempers and consequent dislikes of those about me, which 



THE LOST OXE FOUND. 



525 



perhaps an almost unavoidable unsociability on my part 
helped to draw upon me, were a constant source of annoy- 
ance. But much more — Ob, how much more ! — humiliation 
did I experience from the occasional likings of which T was 
the object. That was, indeed, a dragging of me through 
the mire. How hard I found it to tolerate the risings of 
pride, and not to run away from what I felt as the deepest 
degradation of all ! It pleased God that I should even 
very recently undergo a trial of this kind. It was, I may 
say, the last bitter drop given to my self-love to drink ; 
and how I rejoiced to find that the sweet lesson of humility 
had at length been learned, and that I could receive it with 
an untroubled spii'it ! For this I blessed and do bless my 
God." Anne paused a minute, and then added, " Yet it 
would be untrue and ungenerous were I not to say that 
amongst the class with which I was called to associate as 
an equal, I found much to love and much to edify. How 
many did I meet in the constant practice of a humility, an 
rmselfishness, and a simplicity which seemed a second nature 
to them, but which had cost me years of hard struggle to 
acquire ! " 

" It was more difficult to you, dearest Anne, from your 
very antecedents. More sacrifice was involved in these 
acts on your part than was possible in theii's." 

" Yes, that is true, to a certain extent. I had that to 
unlearn which they had never learned ; but do not let us 
therefore diminish their merit. Service is a great trial to 
every man and woman in the world, and it is the occasion 
in not a few, as I have found, for the acquisition of many 
virtues : it might be a school of high sanctity to all." 

Ajine was much pleased at having often her niece Pauline 
to come and sit with her, and was charmed with the guile- 
lessness of this young heart. The cats were tolerated, and 
allowed to frisk upon the bed, and exhibited a special 
partiality for its occupant ; all who are familiar with 



526 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

animals, indeed, will have noticed the instinctive likings 
they will display for certain individuals. Instead of view- 
ing these little creatures as a distraction from the topics on 
which she alone desired to converse, or, in fact, ever did 
converse, Anne took occasion, from the subject of God's 
creation, to draw Pauline's miud to spiritual subjects. And 
then she would tell her of the love of God's saints for these 
mute companions of our earthly life, as manifested in 
St. Francis of Assisi, for instance, and many others ; or 
again, she would relate Blessed Lidwine's visit in vision to 
the earthly Paradise in company of her guardian angel, and 
describe the beaiitiful flowers and animals she saw there. 
With much more of this kind did Anne well know how to 
intersperse the conversation, and extract matter for edifica- 
tion from Pauline's natural tastes and predilections. To 
no portion of the day did her niece look forward with more 
pleasure than to the hour she was allowed to spend by her 
aunt's bedside. 

And then the elder niece, her namesake, returned to hear 
the joyful news that Aunt Anne was found. Aunt Anne, 
in whose story she had taken so lively an interest. The 
retreat had been decisive as respected its chief object, the 
choice of a state of life. Anne's director, during its exercises, 
had expressed to her his strong opinion that she was not 
called to a religious life, but rather to the married state ; 
at any rate that it was, he believed, God's will that she 
should sanctify her soul in the woi^ld. Anne d'Hericourt 
had many conversations with her saintly aunt, to whom she 
at once felt that she could manifest every thought of her 
heart. Soon she had poured into her ear the little history 
of her late partiality and half engagement, and how she had 
given it up, because she believed that there was no security 
for solid happiness in a marriage of that kind. 

" You did right," said her aunt. " You never would 
have been happy, in the true sense of the word, with Mr. 



THE LOST ONE FOUND. 527 

Algernon "VVyndham. He is an amiable young man, I 
believe ; lie lias many good qualities, but his heart has gone 
away from God. Never accept the love of a heart which 
does not love its God supremely j you will accept a worth- 
less thing if you do." 

" I have not a feeling of regret as to my determination," 
replied Anne; "and, indeed, I believe that I never had 
anything as regarded my feelings towards him, beyond 
impressions, a gratified imagination, and, I suppose, grati- 
fied self-love ; but that is all a thing of the past now — as 
respects him, I mean. He is personally nothing to me, and 
never can be anything to me." 

" You will probably marry, my child ; and everything 
will depend on a good choice. A good choice is not so easy 
a thing to make, I mean a very good one ; perhaps, how- 
ever, no one was ever better situated than yourself for 
making one in every point of view excellent." 

" How so 1 " said Anne. 

" There is a young man who has known and loved you 
from childhood. No man or woman, of course, is faultless, 
but Eustace Rochfort is as nearly free from any defect, so 
far as I can judge, as is well possible ; never have I known 
any one whose unselficshness and purity of intention have 
so deeply struck me. It is from your mother, not from 
himself, that I have learned the secret of his long attach- 
ment to you, and neither she nor Mr. Rochfort has the 
slightest idea that 1 designed to mention the subject to you. 
Your mother would not do so, I am sure, from the fear of 
appearing to desire to influence you, and the young man 
thinks so little of his own merits or worth, that he is likely 
to be unwilling to sacrifice your friendship by endeavouring 
to obtain what he humbly believes he has no chance of 
obtaining. P.ut I thought it was well you should know 
this. I shall not tell my sister w^hat I have said, and cer- 
tainly I shall not tell Mr. Rochfort either ; so jom will be 



528 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

as free, and may feel as free, as you were before. Only, if 
you will take a dying woman's advice — you know that 
always counts for something — do not, dear Anne, lightly 
throw away an opportunity of making a choice so wise 
and good." 

" Dear aunt," said Anne, much moved at this unexpected 
declaration, " your advice would always be valued by me 
more than I can say; but I am quite taken by surprise. 
Eustace Rochfort attached to me from my childhood ! I 
can scarcely believe it." 

" It is true, most true, nevertheless ; you have been his 
one and only love." 

Anne thought a moment. " I know," she then said, 
"how good he is, and lately I have accidentally heard things 
which have made me value him still more. I have also a 
warm friendship for him, and we have tastes and pursuits 
in common, but " — and she paused. 

" But what 1 " asked her aunt. 

*' I hardly know how to express myself, lest you should 
misunderstand me." 

" Perhaps I can guess. You mean that you esteem him 
and think him worthy of love, but that you do not love 
him ] " 

" Well, partly, but not exactly. I believe I could love 
him very much, and the knowledge that he has long loved 
me does touch my heart, which shows me that I am not 
indifferent to him ; otherwise I should be sorry, not pleased. 
But when I come to reflect upon myself, I find, not that I 
have ever loved any one really better, but that I could love 
in a way in which I could never expect to love him. I had 
a feeling for that other one which I never should have for 
him. I can hardly explain what it was, but he satisfied my 
imagination in many ways. I do not mean that I would 
prefer him with my present knowledge ; if I had to 
marry one of the two, I should not hesitate ; nevertheless. 



THE LOST ONE FOUND. 529 

knowing what I could feel if Mr. Rochfort had, in addition 
to his worth and lovable qualities, that indescribable charm 
which the other possessed, it seems as if, were I to accept 
him, I should be giving him but half a heart. I fear I am 
scarcely intelligible, and, if you understand me, I fear you 
will blame me and think me foolish." 

'' I believe I understand you, my dear Anne, and I will 
not call you foolish, though T think you are disposed to 
fall into a mistake, from looking into your feelings too closely 
and from comparing what ought not to be compared. You 
are not what people call in love with Mr. Rochfort ; you 
think you could not be so. Well, I suppose it is not com- 
mon, at least not for women, to fall in love with those they 
have known intimately as friends for many years. And yet 
a most tender and beautiful affection may and often does 
spring up between persons who have been thus associated, 
an affection which, when grounded on mutual esteem, is a 
better security for enduring love than any mere attraction 
could be, and for a love the quality of which will not change. 
I have nothing to say against that sentiment, of a more 
exciting nature, of which we were just now speaking. It 
is often a help to the discovery of mutual aflSnities and sym 
pathies, which fit persons to be companions ; and, besides, 
whatever God has implanted in us has a good purpose and 
a holy end. Yet sometimes it misleads us ; sometimes it is 
followed by bitter disappointment ; at other times, when[it 
does not disappoint, it becomes a snare by leading to a 
species of idolization. Its presence is no essential element 
in real love. I do not say you were in love with young 
Mr. Wyndham, but, if not, you were on the road to being 
so ; your liking had this tendency in it. Yet, apart from 
his unworthiness of your love from a religious point of view, 
I suspect that disappointment and disenchantment might 
have followed on closer knowledge. Mr. Wyndham's 
recommendations are patent and on the surface. He has 

2 M 



530 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

talents, but whether there be much corresponding depth is 
another thing. At the best, I am convinced that he could 
scarcely have satisfied you as a husband ; for, if I am not 
much mistaken, you are mentally and by education his 
superior ; that is not well. Now, it is dilFerent with Mr. 
Rochfort. I do not scruple to say he is your superior, Anne, 
yet 1 do not undervalue you by any means." 

" I am sure he is." 

" More than you know, perhaps, though well disposed to 
believe it, because as yet you know him but imperfectly, 
for all you have seen him so often. You may rely upon it, 
Eustace Kochfort has depths both of heart and of mind 
which you have never suspected ; his delicate reserve and 
marvellous modesty keep his merits out of sight." 

'^ He is reserved," said Anne, " and I am inclined to be 
so too, which, perhaps, has stood in the way of more real 
knowledge." 

" Reserve in him, however, does not spring from want of 
frankness or an unconfiding nature, any more than it does 
in you," continued her aunt ; *' it would all melt away 
in true intimacy, and then it is that his charm would come 
to light. It is something, surely," she added, smiling, " to 
make agreeable discoveries and to have pleasant surprises, 
and not to know all there is to like in a single day, only to 
find too late, perhaps, that the picture we have been con- 
templating was something like scene-painting, which loses 
all its beauty and all its illusion on a near inspection. 
A wife, if she is to be happy, ought to be able also to look 
up to her husband and find a help in his guidance, instead 
of only hoping that with the blessing of God he may be 
kept straight. Eustace Rochfort, so far from being a source 
of uneasiness and of solicitude, would be a support to you, 
and lead you on in the paths of holiness." 

" That is most true," replied Anne. She said no more, 
but the conversation had made an impression on her. Nor 



THE LOST ONE FOUND, 531 

did it count for nothing in Eustace's favour that she had 
become aware of having been the object of his silent love 
for so long a period. Tf her mother had told her this but 
a short time since, it would, it is true, have had a very 
different effect upon her, as it would have led to her forming 
a decided determination against him ; but circumstances 
had since occurred which had considerably modified her 
feelings, and she had, besides, the satisfaction of knowing 
that no one was aware that she was in possession of this 
little secret. She was not therefore called upon for any 
immediate decision. 

Anne Rytell was not to prolong her stay among them. 
Symptoms, which increased in intensity, manifested the near 
approach of death. She was herself aware that the time of 
her departure was near at hand, and she wished to take 
leave of all while as yet she had the full use of speech and 
of her mental powers. Then she would be left alone with 
God, and with God's minister, and with the sister who 
loved her only for God's sake, as she expressed it : that 
was the nun who had come to tend her in her sickness. She 
had made this pact with her sister Pauline. To be in the 
midst of her family, who desired this consolation, she had 
given up her own wish to die in the common hospital, 
unknown to all ; bat she must reserve the privilege of dying 
alone. Madame d'Hericourt willingly consented. It is a 
usage far from strange to Catholics, embodying, as it does, 
in a practical form a truly Catholic object, and in Italy, 
where she had once made a considerable stay, it was a very 
common custom in the case of the dying. They bid adieu 
to their friends, who then withdraw, leaving them to the 
ministrations of the Church. So it neither shocked nor 
surprised Madame d'Hericourt to have this request made by 
her sister. They accordingly gathered round her bed to 
give and receive the last farewell on earth, Eustace Roch- 
fort being also present by the dying woman's express desire. 
2 M 2 



532 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

Anne Rytell was propped up in her bed, the crucifix, which 
lay on her bosom, she held clasped in one of her thin 
hands ; her countenance, as throughout her illness, bore an 
expression of indescribable peace. It was as if the battle 
was over. This is not invariably the case during the last 
hours even of the very holy, but it was so in Anne's case. 
After addressing to them all collectively a few simple words 
of exhortation, or, rather, of sweet entreaty to love God 
only, for that He only was worthy of love, as they would 
all know at the last, she whispered some special coun- 
sel to each, signing to them in succession to draw closer 
to her. 

Pauline was the first. She was weeping more than any 
of the rest ; it was her nature. " Dear child," said her 
aunt in a low voice, " do not weep for me. I am very 
happy, and you will be happy, too, if you will live for our 
good God. You have the simple tastes of childhood still, 
Pauline. Take care that when they go you do not replace 
them with the baubles and frivolities of a later age ; that 
will be your danger. Ofier all your little recreations to 
God now; say, 'All for thee, my God.' You can make 
that intention with your present diversions, for they are 
innocent ', and when you feel you cannot say this sin- 
cerely, be sure you have got a toy which you must throw 
away." 

Thea Anne drew near, and she said to her, " Strive to 
love God more and more, and with great simplicity. He 
loves the simple, and favours them above all. Beware of 
too much self-scrutiny ; we can examine ourselves better 
without that, for we shall see ourselves in the light God 
gives, and He gives that light to those who have their eye 
on Him ; and we shall act better, too. When you paint, 
you look more at what you are copying than at the point of 
}our pencil. Don't look too much at your pencil's point, 
dear Anne, but look at that Face the beholding of which 



THE LOST ONE FOUND. 533 

transforms us into Its glorious likeness. God bless you 
and guide you." 

Anne Rytell then beckoned to Eustace, who, as not being 
a relative, and also from his retiring modesty, had remained 
in the backgi'ound. It was to thank him for all his kind- 
ness and charity. " My thanks are owed to 2/oifc," he said ; 
" and now will you add to my gratitude by giving me a word 
of parting advice ? It will be treasured up by me through 
life." '^ Persevere," she replied, ''in the course in which 
you are walking." Eustace was the only one to whom she 
had no other counsel to give. 

Last of all, the sister and companion of her youth drew 
near. It was a trying moment to Pauline d'Hericourt, 
but she was too thankful to God for His late mercy to 
repine, and loved her sister too dearly not to control her 
emotion. " Pauline," said the dying one, " we are parting 
now, when I had hoped we had been about to meet in our 
true home ; but our Lord is very good, and detains you 
here to become more perfect. I know you love God, and 
wish to love Him wholly, so I need not urge that upon 
you j but fly solicitudes, and dread scruples as the rust of 
our actions. Scruples do not flow from exceeding love, 
because love casts out fear. Sometimes they are trials, 
but when they come from our own selves, they come, I 
think, from the fear that we have not done our duty. 
Duty — yes, it is well for many to think of their duty to 
God ; but a time comes when that carefulness about our 
duty is a clog upon us and a hindrance to pure love. You 
understand me. Pure love loses sight of duty, just as it 
forgets the law. Get liberty of spirit ; cast all into the 
bosom of God." Such was the advice which Anne Rytell 
addressed to one who few would have supposed needed 
any. But Anne thought that in her conscientious sister 
this one thing perhaps was lacking to perfection, and that 
the very delicacy of her conscience fed a species of self- 



534 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

reproacli and anxiety, which, though not sinful, is an 
imperfection, as being a remnant of self And Pauline did 
understand her. 

All had now received their parting confidence, when 
Anne d'Hericourt said, " Dear aunt, will you not leave a 
message for poor Gertrude Wyndham ? she values so much 
all you say." 

" She does not need my counsel," replied her aunt ; 
" God has sent her a friend and adviser." 

"Mr. Sanders'?" 

"Yes ; no one knows the worth of that man, he does 
not know it himself ; it is hidden from him by his wonder- 
ful simplicity, but T believe he stands very high in God's 
favour — so high that many will marvel when the day 
comes for the revealing of all secrets. But I do not forget 
that family, with which I dwelt so long, and will remember 
them all before the throne of God, when I am admitted to 
His presence." 

Then Madame d'Hericourt begged her sister to give 
them all her blessing. " I am not worthy," she said, " but, 
if you desire it, I will pray God to bestow His blessing on 
you." They all knelt down near the bed, and Anne E-ytell 
made the sign of the cross, looking up to heaven, and mur- 
muring a prayer. After which she gazed lovingly at them 
all. Anne and Eustace were next each other. The dying 
woman beckoned to them to come a little nearer, then she 
took her niece's hand and deliberately placed it in that of 
Eustace. She said not a word, but there was no mistaking 
the meaning of the act ; nor did she open her lips again, 
but leaned back, closed her eyes, and by a slight wave of 
her hand signified that all was over now, and she would be 
left alone. 

The next day, at that same hour, she was lying with the 
crucifix still on her bosom, and, with it, a beautiful white 
lily, Avhich her sister had reverently placed there. Not a 



CONCLUSION. 535 

line was visible on the fair countenance ; lier hair, which 
had never known a touch of grey, was smoothed back on 
her alabaster brow, and there was almost a smile on the 
lips. As Pauline gazed on her she could fancy she beheld 
her as she was twenty years before, in the flower of her 
youth, only that now there was something more heavenly 
and more touching in her loveliness. '• Truly," she said to 
herself, " God is pleased to beautify her singularly in death 
because she despised aud abased herself in life for the love 
of Him." 



CONCLUSTON. 

We must now return to other scenes. Affairs had gone 
ill with the Wyndhara family since we last parted from 
them. Mr. "VVyndham's election was a contested one, as he 
expected ; he had to disburse a good deal of money at 
Whittlebury, and to go through a good deal of harassing 
work. Backed, however, by the Duke of Plumpton's 
interest, he pulled through, and was returned for that 
borough. The liberal party loudly declared that there had 
been bribery and corruption, and it was believed that the 
validity of the election would be disputed. So neither 
retrospects nor prospects were particularly agi'eeable to 
Percy Wyndham, as he returned to his empty house in 
Berkeley Square, to find the sofas and chairs swathed in 
linen and brown holland, and to be cooked and done for 
by Mrs. Jervis. To console him the following morning, as 
he sat at his solitary, cheerless breakfast — Wyndham, 
though not a talkative man, did not relish solitude, and 
sadly missed his family entourage — there w^as his daily 
paper at least. He took it up, and in about a minute or 



636 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

two laid it down again rather suddenly ; then he pushed 
away his cup of chocolate, which remained untouched, and 
leaned back in his arm-chair. 

Mrs. Jervis entered at this juncture w^ith the grilled leg 
of a fowl which the master had ordered, and was uncom- 
fortably struck by his appearance. He was very pallid, so 
she ventured to inquire whether he felt unwell ; he replied 
rather faintly that he was not ill, and made an effort to sit 
up with a show of attempting to help himself to some of 
the dish which she had set before him ; but this was only 
for the purpose of ridding himself of her presence. As soon 
as she was gone he resumed his former attitude, and an 
hour later she found him in the same position. His speech 
now appeared to be partially affected, at least there was a 
degree of thickness in his utterance which alarmed the 
good woman, so she consulted with her husband, and they 
both thought it well to send for Dr. Hawes. The doctor 
was soon there, pronounced the patient to be not precisely 
suffering under an attack of paralysis, but seriously threat- 
ened with a seizure. A telegraphic message was sent to 
Mrs. Wyndham, ])roper remedies were administered, and 
by the afternoon, when his terrified wife arrived, she had 
at any rate the consolation of finding that the danger had 
been staved off, and of hearing the assurance from the 
physician's lips that the late attack, or rather threat of 
attack, would, he was confident, leave no traces : neverthe- 
less it was a warning, and one which ought not to be 
disregarded. Future health would very much depend on 
the care and prudence adopted. 

We must pause a moment here to give a glance at Percy 
Wyndhara's pecuniary affairs. It would liav^e been weU 
had the person most interested therein given more than a 
glance long before this period. The immediate cause of his 
illness, which came as the climax of other predisposing 
causes, was the having seen in the newspaper the failure of a 



CONXLUSION. 537 

house of business in which he had himself some money 
embarked ; not, it is true, to any very large amount, but 
still a considerable sum, the loss of which in the present 
embarrassed state of his finances would be a very serious 
matter to him. Percy Wyndham, it will be remembered, 
was a younger son. In his early youth he had been, like 
his son Algernon after him, somewhat wasteful and extra- 
vagant. Without being addicted to any special vice, young 
men of the world will often be extravagant, and get through 
an incredible amount of money. So Percy's father had to 
pay his son's debts, and grumbled, as Percy did when his 
own turn came ; and then the son had bethought himself 
of improving his circumstances by marriage, for the money 
seemed likely to ooze away as before. A friend had men- 
tioned Beatrice Sanders to him, as a strikingly handsome 
girl, and the acknowledged heiress of thirty or forty thousand 
pounds. But Beatrice moved in the second set. Her uncle, 
the Nabob, had made his fortune, but the upper walks of 
society were unattainable to him. For himself he did not 
care, but he coveted them for his beautiful niece. If you 
should enter the salon of a rich individual of the second set 
you will very likely find as good music, as good lighting, 
and as good a supper as in the most aristocratic house ; you 
will see as expensive dressing, and, possibly, as many pretty 
girls. One who belongs to the superior circle will say that 
you will not observe the same air of distinction in the 
ladies, and that the deficiency is still more palpable in the 
gentlemen ; he will also tell you that if you look below the 
surface you will miss something and find something which 
tells you, in a manner diflacult to put into words, that you 
are out of your element ; you are, in fact, among the second 
set. The difference may be, and, doubtless, is to a great 
degree, purely conventional, and argues no real inferiority often 
in the matter even of genuine refinement. Be this as it may, 
there is one thing unquestionably true — that he who moves 



538 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

in the first set will not recognize a single face whicli lie is 
in the habit of seeing in the circle he frequents. So Percy 
Wyndham did not see a face he knew in the handsome ball- 
room of a great printer in the purlieus of Bedford Square, 
for which an invitation had been procured for him, but he 
saw Beatrice Sanders's bright eyes, which took him captive 
at once. The courtship was not long. He was accepted, 
and the ^abob had been charmed to get a son-in-law of 
birth and social position, such as Mr. Wyndham possessed ; 
so there were no difficulties raised about settlements. A 
very handsome allowance was made to the young couple, 
and thirty thousand pounds were settled on the bride, un- 
hampered in any way by tyings up or trusteeships ; so, 
when the uncle died soon after, the ^\^yndhams had the full 
control of their money, capital as well as interest. Then 
Percy's father died, and the son inherited his portion, as 
younger son, of eight thousand pounds. It must be allowed 
that the Wyndhams, if not rich, had a comfortable provision, 
and might have done extremely well but for Wyndham's 
ambition as regarded public life. Much was spent on 
elections, and circumstances had begun to look awkward, 
when a cousin, an old bachelor, died, and left them his town 
house furnished and a good sum of money besides. This 
unexpected windfall set them on their legs again, and 
unfortunately elated them a little too much ; for Percy 
Wyndham had already borrowed money at interest, which 
it would have been wise now to repay. He hoped, however, 
gradually to discharge the debt with less inconvenience, 
which virtually meant with less retrenchment. His wife, 
from whom he concealed nothing else, was ignorant that he 
had borrowed this money — he would have been glad to 
have concealed the unpleasant fact even from himself; but 
Percy's expectations of gradually liquidating the debt had 
proved fallacious ; the London house and the London season 
had entailed much expense, and the occasional drain from 



CONCLUSION. 539 

elections, which always cost something even when there is 
no contest, continued as before. 

At the time, therefore, at which this narrative fii-st 
introduced the Wyndham family to us, things were rapidly 
sinking back into the old state ; hence the uneasiness which 
Wyndham displayed from time to time. He had not, how- 
ever, the courage to make a searching examination, and 
thoroughly to satisfy himself as to how he stood. His wife 
would not have lacked the decision and prudence necessary 
for such a step, but she was in the dark, as we have seen, 
in regard to the debts. When, therefore, this failure of a 
house of business in which he had a pecuniary interest 
occurred, coupled with the depreciation of the Spanish bonds 
and his many late expenses, Wyndham received a severe 
shock. When he had sufficiently recovered to give his mind 
to the subject, he saw that some immediate retrenchment was 
absolutely necessary, if he would not be a ruined man. He 
now told all to his wife, who behaved very well, and was 
the first to propose that they should part with the house in 
Berkeley Square along with a large part of the furniture, 
reserving only a portion, in order to furnish a house of 
smaller size, whenever they should be able to set up again. 

And now came the question of the seat in Parliament. 
The physician had given it as his decided opinion that 
late hours, hot rooms, mental excitement, irregularity in 
meals, and, above all, late dinners, were very bad, nay, full 
of risk, for Mr. Wyndham. But how is a member of 
Parliament to avoid late hours, a heated atmosphere, mental 
excitement, and irregularity in the hours of eating] Com- 
mon prudence pointed to a resignation of the seat, whicli 
was, moreover, almost certain to be disputed. The verdict 
might go against the Conservative member. Wyndham 
knew he was personally guiltless of bribery, but could he 
be sure what the Duke of Plumptoa's agent might have 
done in his name ? Undoubtedly he had been obliged to 



540 THE WYXDHAM FAMILY. 

disburse a great deal. He could not afford to recommence, 
if unseated ; so Beatrice modestly suggested that it might 
be best to resign. *' Surely I had better wait till I see the 
result/' replied Wyndham rather testily. " Perhaps nothing 
after all will be done." 

'^ But, then, your health 1 " suggested his wife. 

" Well, if I resign, it is as good as shelving myself at 
once at forty-eight," rejoioed the husband ; and then she 
said no more. Wyndham was a man who specially disliked 
the idea of being what he called " shelved " ; and there are 
very many like him in that respect. Mrs. Wyndham, 
however, remem.bered that not only would prudence as 
regarded health have dictated retirement from public life, 
but as respected circumstances it was highly desirable that 
attendance on Parliament should cease. Of course, now 
that the London house would be given up, Wyndham must 
have a lodging while the House was sitting. This would 
cost money, and it would also separate him from his family. 
But she refrained from insisting ; she was a woman of con- 
siderable discretion and self-control, as we have seen ; and, 
to do her justice, it must be added, although worldly, she 
was not altogether selfish — her selfishness, at least, did not 
centre in her own person. Far from it, she was continually 
sacrificing herself in a thousand ways to those about her. 
True, her charities had rather a restricted circle, and, it is 
to be feared were nourished more by natural affection 
than by any supernatural motive. 

After a few days Mr. Wyndham was able to accompany 
his wife to Dover, where they remained, getting through 
the summer and autumn as well as they were able. It was 
rather weary work at times to keep up spirits, for the poor 
paterfamilias had no resources in himself, and took no 
lively interest in anything except public affairs and politics. 
From an active share in these his health threatened to 
separate him ; he did not like to allow this to himself, but 



COIfCLUSION. 541 

he knew it, and the knowledge depressed him. Emma 
made very creditable efforts to be cheerful, but there was 
nothing to make her feel very gay, either in the memories 
of the past or the prospects of the future. Gertrude, as 
the autumn drew on, got a cough, which added to the 
anxieties of her mother. Sanders did not leave Scotland 
until the middle of September, spent a day or two in 
Warwickshire, and in London on his way back, and reached 
Dover during the last week in September. He had heard, 
of course, of Wyndham's illness and the pecuniary difficul- 
ties, and did not expect to find the family very bright- 
His visit, however, was welcomed very differently to what 
it had been three months ^before in London. All were 
sincerely rejoiced to see him, and his coming revived the 
general spirits. Wyndham, who really liked his brother- 
in-law, and was pleased to have a fresh comer to relieve 
his dulness, was more himself that evening than he had 
been since his illness. This would not last, of course ; 
what does last in this world 1 Meanwhile Mrs. Wyndham, 
who was of a sanguine elastic disposition, was greatly cheered, 
particularly as her brother, who, she knew, never said what 
he did not truly tliink, assured her that he did not remark 
much difference in her husband. Gertrude, he thought, 
looked and seemed quite unstrung and far from well. His 
sister owned to feeling uneasy at her altered appearance, 
and said she thought they would have to move either to 
the Isle of Wight or to Devonshire for the winter ; " but 
Percy," she added, " seems disinclined, and I do not like 
to alarm him." Then Sanders again proposed to take his 
niece to Italy with him ; and this time the anxious mother 
did not oppose the plan. If her father consented, Gertrude 
should go. It was with some little trouble that this con- 
sent was obtained, for Percy's temper since his illness had 
manifested a certain waywardness and irritability which 
made him somewhat intractable. He had never liked to be 



542 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

reasoned with, but formerly he generallj^ gave in to avoid 
an argument ; now he was more disposed to the opposite 
plan of action. John Sanders, however, succeeded in per- 
suading him at last. "The girl coughs, you see," he said, 
" and winter is coming on. If she gets worse, the doctors 
may be recommendirig you to take her to some warmer 
]»lace, which just now would be inconvenient to you ; you 
had best let me take her ; I will bring her back to you in 
May." So Percy at length gave a grumbling assent, and 
when once he had said "Yes," however reluctantly, he never 
drew back from his word. 

Sanders deferred his departure for a couple of days, to 
give time to his niece to make her preparations. Gertrude 
was truly hapi)y to go with him, but her heart would have 
been lighter could she have left her family more cheerfully 
situated. She felt especially parting from Emma, w^ho, 
however, did not pain her by making any opposition. 
Emma, in fact, knew that by her late behaviour she had 
forfeited the right to complain of anything, and, besides, 
she shared her mother's uneasiness about Gertrude's cough. 
Sanders, during his stay, was able to communicate an 
interesting piece of news. He had seen Madame d'Heri- 
court in London, who had come over by herself for a few 
days, and had informed him that her daughter Anne was 
engafjed to Mr. Eochfort. 

" I always thought it would be so," said Gertrude. 

" Poor Algernon ! " exclaimed Mrs. Wyndham. 

" I rather think poor Algernon will console himself," 
rejoined Sanders. Emma thought so, too, but remained 
silent. " Where is he now ?" asked the uncle. 

" He is gone to Scotland," replied his sister, " to pay 
some visits, and will remain during October for the grouse- 
shooting." 

" He will console himself," repeated Sanders. 

Both uncle and niece were right in their belief. Alger- 



CONCLUSION. 543 

non, however, had not returned, as Emma had once pre- 
dicted, to his old flirtation with Lady Jane Follett. There 
was too much contrast between her and his late love to 
admit of the revival of his liking ; at present, indeed, he 
was not much disposed to fall in love at all, but some one 
had fallen in love with him. This was a certain Mrs. 
Fenton, the widow of a rich banker, who had left her at his 
decease almost the whole of his large fortune. She was 
some six years Algernon's senior, but was good-looking, 
showy, and agreeable ; not precisely what the young man 
would have himself picked out, but still very endurable 
under present circumstances. These circumstances, pecu- 
niarily speaking, were very awkward, and assistance from 
his father was less than ever to be expected. As regarded 
heart, the ground might be said to be lying fallovr. He 
had discarded the idea of Anne d'Hericourt, for Algernon 
was not a man to fret after the unattainable, but he had no 
mind, as I have said, for any one else. Mrs. Fenton, there- 
fore, might be quite as good as another, so far as personal 
preference was concerned, and a great deal better in a pru- 
dential point of view than most. Difficulties in the way 
there were none, nor were there any mortifications in store; 
for, instead of a papa to be encountered, who would talk of 
settlements, here was a lady, her o"v\ti mistress, who was most 
willing to pay his debts, and would think him cheap at that 
price. Thus, the denouement of the affair could hardly be 
doubtful. 

On the last evening before the departure of Sanders, he 
lingered on with his sister after the rest had retired — 
Percy now went to bed early — and when they were alone 
he gave her the history of her late servant, which Madame 
d'Hericourt had told him in confidence. As she could 
not make the world understand the eminent holiness of 
her sister, and the heroic sacrifices to which it had led 
her, she did not wish her to be the subject of gossip. 



544 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

wonder, and vulgar observations. *' God knows," she had 
added, " so far from feeling any personal shame on the sub- 
ject, I glory in her, but I think I am best consulting her 
wishes by leaving her in the shade and obscurity which she 
sought. However, as she left a message for your family, I 
will make an exception in respect to you." 

The reader knows what this message was. All this, as 
well as the singular history and holy death of her late 
servant, who had lived so long unknown under her roof, 
Sanders related to his sister, and, as he spoke, the blood 
mounted to her face to that painful degree which almost 
forces tears into the eyes. Emma had had her severe mor- 
tification. It was now the turn of Mrs. Wyndham. " Oh, 
John ! " she exclaimed. " This is cruel ! this is dreadful ! 
What have I done 1 " 

"You did not know it," said Sanders. "I would not 
have told you, Beatrice, if I had thought it would affect 
you so painfully.^' 

" You were right to tell me, John ; it is better, no doubt, 
that I should know, but — when I remember how I treated 
her!" 

" You did not ill-treat her, I suppose. You treated her 
as you treated your other servants, no doubt ; but, then, 
you thought she was one of the same class. She had placed 
herself in that class, and, of course, did not expect or wish 
to be treated differently. If an emperor chooses to travel 
incog, in a railway carriage, dressed like a farmer, and I 
get in and behave to him as I should to any other good 
sort of man who was my fellow-passenger, the emperor 
would not have any right to complain, and I don't suppose 
he would complain. If I was high and contemptuous, 
because I held this farmer cheap, and thought myself a 
bigger man, who had a title to be respected himself, but 
had no obligation to show respect to any one beneath him, 
then he ivould have a right to complain, not as an emperor 



CONCLUSION. 545 

but as a fellow-man. We all owe each other respect, because 
we are equal before God and servants of the same master, 
but the manner of showing this respect must vary, of course, 
with station." 

" I did not show her respect, John/' replied his sister, 
sadly and emphatically. These words from the lips which 
uttered them were equivalent to a "7?eccam." "I did not 
even show her kindness," she continued, "for I judged 
her rashly, and parted with her in a harsh and unfeeling 
way. God forgive me ! Yet I did not, at least, know that 
she was in so destitute a condition. Of that T was ignorant. 
But I can understand it now ; for Mary Tidman, whom I 
also sent away, and whose pocket was picked of all her 
savings in an omnibus, told Roper, before she left, that 
Tyrell had made the whole sum good to her. Think of the 
charity of that friendless woman ! Ah me, what a brute I 
have been ! I shall never recover it !" 

" Beatrice," said her brother affectionately, "do not take 
on in this way ; fretting is never any good. We are poor 
creatures, and do a great many wrong things ; but we have 
a good God, who will forgive us when we are sorry. You 
see, many of these wrong things we do very ignorantly, 
and then He sends us something to open our eyes ; and 
this is a great grace, even when it makes them smart a 
little. This incident has been a grace. It is an immense 
gain to get a little self-knowledge. When I get a piece of 
self-knowledge, which I often do, thank God ! I assure you 
T quite chuckle over it. We must try and do better ; that 
is all. As for her whom you grieve to have offended, as 
you think, you have no cause for sorrow. If you gave her 
any, it has added to her merits ; and, so far from owing 
you a grudge, I am sure she will have thought you her 
best friend, and now she is in Heaven, I believe, praying 
for you. Come, cheer up ; you can tell Percy and Emma 
all this strange history, and I will tell Gertrude, but say 

2n 



546 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

nothing to Madame d'Hericourt unless she should choose 
to mention the subject to you." Then Sanders wished his 
sister good-night, and, as he did so, he slipped a folded 
piece of paper into her hand. " That," he said, " T thought 
might not come amiss just now, when there have been so 
many expenses." He was hurrying off, but Mrs. Wyndham, 
looking at the paper, saw that it was a cheque for £500. 
" John," she exclaimed, " this is too generous ! I really 
cannot." 

" Nonsense about generosity ! " replied the good man, 
" it can't be a question of generosity between brother and 
sister. Bless your heart ! I shan't miss that sum, or more, 
should you need it. Thank God, things have gone very 
well with me. I am almost afraid of becoming a Dives 
some of these days. 'Now keep that to yourself ; it is for 
you; say nothing to Percy." 

" I onust tell Percy," replied his sister, crying. 

" Not till I am gone, at any rate ; and don't let him say 
a word to me about it, because, you see, it is not for him." 
Then Sanders went off to bed, and Beatrice retired to her 
room, a better woman, I think, than she had last come 
out of it. 

It need scarcely be said that Gertrude spent a very happy 
time that winter. In Teresa she found a pleasant, cheerful 
companion, and a warm friendship) soon sprang up between 
the cousins, which operated most beneficially on Gertrude. 
Teresa had all her sweetness, coupled with a much stronger 
character, a firmer will, a clearer understanding, and a more 
enlightened piety. Like her father, she at once saw the 
true and right path, and entered upon it without hesitation. 
She had also his simplicity of disposition, his candour, and 
utter want of artifice. Although she had not been highly 
educated, the mental training she had received was sound, 
and she had a love of knowledge which had led her to 
acquire much information from her own reading. She had 



CONCLUSION. 547 

also considerable talent of varied kinds, and a love of occu- 
pation, which Gertrude's habits had never fostered in her, 
but which now began to develop under the influence of 
example and the attraction of companionship. And so the 
time passed away most agi-eeably. Gertrude rallied in 
health, and her spirits acquired a buoyancy which they had 
never before possessed. 

Letters from home were cheerful on the whole. Hei 
father's health improved during the winter, and he was 
looking forward to taking his seat when Parliament met 
in the beginning of February. 

" That's bad," said John Sanders. " He had best give 
up all that sort of thing, if be does not want to lose all he 
has gained." 

" I don't think Papa could live without Parliament," 
said Gertrude. 

" That's unfortunate," replied her uncle, " for I fear he 
won't be able to live with it." 

Sanders was a true prophet. Mr. Wyndham took his 
seat, and the petition of the Liberals of Whittlebury failed 
to unseat him, but he had a more potent foe, who was about 
to do their work effectually. Easter fell early that year, 
and Mr. Wyndham joined his family at the end of March. 
Letters now gave a less cheering account of his state. He 
was much lowered and very nervous ; still hopes were 
expressed that the sea-air and rest would revive him, as 
they had before ; he "was not ill. But soon he loas ill ; and 
had another seizure of an unmistakably paralytic character. 
This distressing information was communicated by Mrs. 
Wyndham in a letter to her brother ; she added that, unless 
the attack should be repeated, which she trusted would 
not be the case, she saw no reason why he should bring; 
Gertrude back sooner than he had purposed. But she 
appended a postscript, separate from the letter, in which 
she said that the doctor could not as yet pronounce with 
2n 2 



548 THE WYXDHAM FAMILY. 

any certainty as to security from relapse, although he hoped 
that the danger was passed ; moreover, he had not disguised 
the fact that a second attack would certainly be more 
serious. Should these fears be realized, she would tele- 
graph for them. This postscript John Sanders kept to 
himself, but began ^privately to make arrangements for a 
speedy move, which he thought more than probable. 

The telegram came about three days later, and then he 
and his niece set off at once for England, and reached 
Dover after a hurried journey, dreading to find their worst 
fears realized. But Percy Wyndham was still alive and in 
full possession of his faculties. He had weathered this 
second attack, but the physician judged from his pulse that 
the enemy had not been subdued, although he had used 
very stringent measures, so stringent that it was pretty 
clear that the system would not hold up if they had to be 
repeated. Under these circumstances, Mrs. Wyndham 
well knew that death was staring her husband in the face. 
It was a terrible time with her, poor woman ; and it needed 
all her fortitude, of which she had much, to bear up be- 
neath the anguish which wrung her soul. It was not the 
loss of him alone — that was hard enough to bear — but his 
soul, his poor soul ! He was going, the husband and com- 
panion of her life, whom she had so loved ; and whither 
was he going 1 She knew that for years he had not even 
made his Easter communion ; and he had lived in habitual 
disregard of the precepts of the Church. He had never 
been a scoffer, however, and his wife, so far as she could 
judge, did not think that he had lost his faith. Percy 
Wyndham, as we have seen, was a man who never liked to 
be bothered. Mrs. Wyndham accordingly, while attending 
to her own religious duties, which she had not neglected 
although her life had been tepid and worldly, had never 
obtruded the distasteful subject on her husband. She knew 
that he would not bear much, and, truth to say, her own 



CONCLUSION. 549 

zeal had not been very ardent. Things would come right, 
she hoped. But now it was different. Death was at hand, 
and things had not come right. At all times this would 
have furnished matter of painful solicitude to her, but of 
late her own religious impressions had been deepened, and 
she realized more fully her husband's awful position. She 
must do something; so she broached the subject cautiously, 
and suggested the sending for a priest : it would be a com- 
fort to him, she said. But Percy answered sharply that it 
would be none ; he only wanted to be let alone, and he 
should get better. So Beatrice's mouth was closed. In 
fact she had no influence with him in religious matters. 
Percy Wyndham loved and sincerely respected his wife. 
He had always thought much of her judgment, and had 
consulted her invariably in all family matters of im- 
portance ; keeping nothing from her, except that unfortu- 
nate debt, and that as much to spare her pain and annoy- 
ance as from any other motive. But the influence which 
persons exercise is of a personal kird. It depends more on 
what they are than on aught else. Now Mrs. Wyndham 
was a sincere Catholic certainly, and attended with outward 
decency to her duties, but she could not be said to be a 
good Catholic. She was cold in religious matters, and 
immersed in worldly interests. Wyndham thought it 
natural and becoming in women that they should pay a 
certain respect to religion ; and it can scarcely be surprising 
that he did not believe that his wife's devotion was any- 
thing more than a piece of external decorum. It was, at 
any rate, not sufficiently real or practical to give her a 
right to preach to him ; and Beatrice never preached to 
him. The first time she tried her hand he speedily silenced 
her, as we have just seen. 

The only hope that remained was in what Sanders might 
effect. Percy esteemed his brother-in-law, and knew he was 
a true and fervent Christian ; words with him had realities 



550 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

at their back. Perhaps he might hearken to him, on this 
account alone ; and it could only be on this account. 
Sanders was not likely to speak with more tact than his 
sister ; on the contrary, he would, no doubt, speak with 
much less. He had no eloquence, and would probably adduce 
nothing beyond some simple argument which Wyndham 
had often heard in the course of his life, and had heard un- 
moved. Sanders, however, lost no time — there was no time 
to be lost — in speaking to his brother-in-law on the great 
afiair of his soul. It was no easy task he undertook. He 
had succeeded in five minutes in persuading Wyndham to 
forgive Emma, but then his natural indolence came in 
to aid Sanders's arguments ; it was less trouble to him 
to forgive than to be obdurate ; it was otherwise now : he 
had to obtain his own forgiveness from God, and this 
necessitated a certain effort, to say no more. Sanders got 
no further the first time he spoke than the extracting an 
express acknowledgment from his brother-in-law that he 
was still a believer. He had not lost his faith ; he knew he 
had neglected his duties ; when he was recovered from this 
attack he would set things in order. At present he wished 
to hear no more of the matter ; it made him nervous. 

Sanders paid no attention to this hint, but returned to 
the charge the next day, when his brother-in-law got angry, 
and said that he wearied him. The good man then went off 
to the priest to have a Mass said for his unhappy relative, 
and stirred up his sister and his nieces to pray with re- 
doubled fervour. " Have a little faith and hope," he said ; 
" you have not half hope enough ; you will get nothing 
that way." Then he pulled out his big rosary, and went 
plump down on his knees that very instant to say a decade 
with them in order to obtain that the dying man should 
consent to see a priest. The difficulty was to bring home 
to Percy's mind that he was dying. He clung to life. To 
make his confession seemed a preparation for death. It was 



CONCLUSION. 551 

like having a glimpse of liis coffin, and he recoiled from the 
vei7 idea. 

The next morning, as soon as Wyndham was able to 
receive him, Sanders paid him his usnal visit. He had 
heard but an indifferent report of the patient from his sister. 
"Well, how are you this morning?" he asked, as he seated 
himself by the bed-side. 

" Bad, very bad, Sanders. Do you know," he added, his 
voice having a nervous falter in it, "I have a notion I am 
dying ; what do you think 1 Tell me the truth ; I know 
you always do tell the truth." 

" Well, Percy, I do not think you have very long to live ; 
that is my impression." 

" And what does Barton say about me ? Have you spoken 
to him yourself 1 " 

" Yes, I have. T begged him yesterday to give me his 
opinion without reserve. I did not wish to hear what he 
hoped — we all hoped, of course — but what he really thought. 
And what he said amounted to this : he considered that 
you could not stand another stroke, and he was not satisfied, 
judging from your pulse and other symptoms, that another 
was not impending. Here is the doubt, and here is the 
hope : perhaps you will escape another ; it is possible. He 
don't know ; no more do I ; no more does anybody. In 
some matters the doctors are just as much in the dark as 
the most ignorant of us. But one thing is quite clear, 
Wyndham. The next stroke, if God sends one, may deprive 
you of the power of using your faculties or your speech ; 
at present you have both, and can make the most profitable 
use you ever made of them in your life. Your danger is so 
imminent as to make delay about the greatest piece of folly 
a man could commit ; yet, as your state is not altogether 
hopeless, you would still be able to feel some confidence 
that your act was free and meritorious, and not the mere 
impulse of fear, a mere clutching at Heaven as a last 



552 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

resource, because you know that earth is slipping irretriev- 
ably away. Come, Percy, let me go for the priest." 

" I will think about it," said Wyndham after a pause. 

The entrance of Mrs. Wyndham -and the physician now- 
cut short the conversation, to Sanders's considerable annoy- 
ance ; indeed, he felt almost impatient at the inopportune 
arrival, but a second thought, as he stumped along the 
passage, restored the good man's equanimity. " What a 
fool I am ! " he muttered, so he betook himself to his room, 
and was down on his knees in a minute with the big rosary 
in his hands once more. He had scarcely finished a decade 
before a thought appeared to strike him, and, taking his hat, 
he hurried off in the direction of the Catholic chapel. The 
idea which had struck him was to bring back the priest with 
him, and then catch a favourable moment to obtain Wynd- 
ham's consent to see him. He fancied that he would not 
refuse if he knew him to be in the house. 

To cut the matter short, Sanders succeeded in his object. 
It would have been difiicult to stir up Wyndham to take 
the active step of sending for a priest ; but it was far easier 
to prevail on him not to refuse to see him when he was 
informed that he was actually within his doors. He 
grumbled, and said Sanders had been officious, but added, 
" Of course T must just see him as you have brought him ; 
it would be discourteous not to do so, but I don't know 
much that he can do for me ; T should have wished to 
prepare my mind first." So Wyndham did see the priest, 
and, after that, all went smoothly. He made his confession, 
and received all the sacraments of the dying, while yet in 
full possession of his faculties, and if he did not manifest 
those unmistakable proofs of penitence with which returning 
sinners so often gladden the hearts which love them, allow- 
ance must be made for the undemonstrative nature of the 
man. The priest was satisfied, and Sanders, too, was 
satisfied when Percy, grasping his hand, said, " John, you 



COXCLUSION. 



653 



have been my greatest benefactor. Yon saved my daughter 
from misery and disgrace ; then you saved me from the sin 
of withholding my forgiveness ; and now you have saved 
me from dying myself unforgiven. God bless and reward 
you!" 

Two days more had scarcely elapsed before the dreaded 
stroke came, and the sick man never regained his conscious- 
ness. He died, and little now is left for me to tell. Sanders 
remained for a fortnight with his poor bereaved sister, to 
console her and help her to transact the necessary business 
which devolved upon her. This being accomplished, he 
persuaded her to accompany him to Sicily. He found no 
great difficulty, for Beatrice, who had learned her brother's 
worth, clung to him now in the days of her afl3iction as her 
only prop and support. 

The leader will perhaps wish to know what were Emma 
Wyndham's subsequent fortunes in life. She was married 
a year later to a Sicilian Count. He was not very remark- 
able for either good looks or abilities ; in fact, he was an 
ordinary sort of man, but he was very good-tempered, and 
full of vivacity ; and, what was better still, he was a good 
Catholic. Emma was satisfied with him, and he was more 
than satisfied with Emma ; he was, moreover, extremely well 
pleased with his mother-in-law, and glad that she should make 
his house her home. So the three lived together, to their 
mutual content, Mi-s. Wyndham only visiting England 
occasionally to see her son Algernon, now married to the 
rich widow, and well-to-do as far as this world is con- 
cerned. 

Gertrude's home was with her uncle. Teresa's restored 
strength enabled her about that time to seek entrance into 
religion. She joined the Dominicans, and her father, after 
giving a suitable dowry, adopted Gertrude as his daughter 
and heiress. Gertrude had no desire to many, indeed 
her uncle was all in all to her ; so it is more than probable 



554 THE WYNDHAM FAMILY. 

that he will not lose her, but that she will remain with 
him to be the solace of his declining years. 

Does the reader feel any curiosity concerning the future 
of an individual who has figured prominently in these 
pages — Emma's quondam lover 1 A few days before her 
marriage, as she was looking over Galignanis Messenger, 
a paragraph caught her eye which brought the blood 
to her cheeks, — Lady Selden had eloped with Captain 
Baines. Could it be true "? Kate Selden, whose love of 
the world and calculating appreciation of all the material 
advantages which it had to offer to one in her position, 
would seem, in default of good principles, to have secured 
her from an act so inimical to all her interests ! Yet 
it was true. It does not enter into my plan to relate how 
this came about. Such things do come about sometimes ; 
and persons who lack good principles and the love of virtue 
are led on step by step to commit suicidal acts from which 
sheer selfishness, it might be supposed, would have pre- 
served them. I believe that a certain Rachel Somers, with 
whom the reader is also acquainted, took an active share 
in this disgraceful business. Emma at once shuddered and 
rejoiced as she read. 

It remains now only to give a glance at the H^ricourt 
family. Anne, of course, was married to Eustace E-ochfort, 
and we need not say that this union was a most happy 
one. At the age of eighteen her sister Pauline became the 
wife of a French Baron, whose terre adjoined that of 
Hericourt. He was considerably (though not to a dispro- 
portionate degree) her senior. Pauline did not mind this ; 
nay, she thought it a compliment that she should be singled 
out by a sensible, clever man of thirty-six ; and, no doubt, 
it was much better that she should marry one to whom she 
was sure to look up with a certain deference. Pauline was 
very well disposed in every way, but a steady partner in 
life was a necessity in her case. Nothing would have made 



CONCLUSION. 555 

Anne giddy, but Pauline with a giddy husband might, and 
probably would, have been giddy too. The Baron was not 
giddy, and was an excellent man in every way. He had 
the prudence, too, not to allow his young wife the oppor- 
tunity of replacing "the simple tastes of her childhood 
with the baubles and frivolities of a later age." Accord- 
ingly he avoided Paris as a residence, and lived on his 
estate. Pauline made an admirable dame du chdteau as 
she grew older, without, I believe, ever losing her partiality 
for the feline race, which she was able to indulge without 
opposition on the part of her complaisant husband, whose 
pleasure it was to gratify all her harmless tastes while 
encouraging her in the practice of those works of charity 
which are the special sphere of a Christian woman. 
Madame d'Hericourt saw the fruit of her labours in the 
happy marriages of her two children, and was blessed. 

Has the reader failed to perceive the moral of my story? 
Should this be so, I will, in conclusion, point it out. The 
result of Madame d'H6ricourt's system of education was 
the possession of a legitimate influence over her daughtei^, 
which, in spite of the temporary temptation which the 
eldest experienced, led her finally to a well-assorted union. 
That of Mrs. Wyndham resulted in the entire absence of 
all true maternal control, and would, as its natural fruit, 
have precipitated her ill-advised child into a fatal marriage 
had she not had the good fortune to have for her brother 
honest, though homely, John Sanders. 



THE END. 



WTlIAjr AND SONS, PEINTKBS, GEBAT QUBBJf SXBBET, LONDON, W.C. 



WORKS BY THE SAME AUTHOR. 



"jITARY, STAR OF THE SEA; or, a Garland of 
JLtJL Livinor Flowers, culled from the Divine Scriptures, and 
woven to the honour of the Holy Mother of God. A Story of 
Catholic Devotion. New Edition. 5s. 

" A beautiful dream, the ideal of a holy life, every incident and 
character in which was natural, and, strange to say, in the highest 
degree pi-actical, and yet with a certain mysterious, imaginative air 
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lection of it hovers about a reader after he has forgotten the details, 
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household, made romantic by its distance in memory, in which it 
seemed ' That airs of Paradise did fan the house, 

And angels offic'd all.' "—Tablet, 1850. 

" Years ago we read an exceedingly pretty little book, and its 
pleasant and most useful, as well as cheering, lessons never left our 
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called, ' Mary, Star of the Sea,' and certaialy it was a general 
favourite in every Catholic circle into which we knew it to penetrate." 
— Catlwlic Times. 

" A pleasing and instructive story, leading the reader along through 
a very good exposition of Scriptural evidences to Mary's dignity and 
privilege." — Month. 

" An old and well-established favourite." — New York Catholic World. 

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Mother of God, the Spotless Bride of the Holy Ghost. . . . It is 
a commentary on the Litany of Our Lady of Loreto, and, as such, 
full of instruction and incentives to devotion." — Brownson's Review. 

II. 

MOUNT ST. LAWRENCE. 2 Vols. Cheap 
Edition. 7s. 

"A very clever book, full of female insight into domestic 
Machiavelism." — Globe. 

" This fiction is as remarkable in its way as ' Alton Locke.' The 
knowledge of human nature shown is considerable ; in the traits 
which sepax'ate the masculine from the feminine character, the 
knowledge displayed is profound, and the development skilfully 
natural." — Spectator. 

"As a work of art we are disposed to assign to 'Mount St. 
Lawrence ' a very high position. . . . There is scarcely a page 
which is not the result of many a year of sUent watching of the 
greatnesses and httlenesses, the infirmities and the graces, of culti- 
vated English life ; while the wit, liveliness, and sweet feeling with 
which the whole story is told, make it one of the most agreeable 
books we know of." — Rambler. 



Works by the same Author. 



" * Motmt St. Lawrence ' is distinguished by an elegance of 
thought, a gracefulness of style, and an ingenuity of construction, 
which captivate the fancy even of those whose convictions remain 
unchanged. With a devout inclination and a disposition of mind 
which, at once singular and romantic, affects the shade rather than 
the sunshine, the author combines minute observation of life and 
manners, remarkable skill in contrasting and discriminating character, 
and excellent powers of description ; and it is by the judicious exer- 
cise of these rare attributes that she has succeeded in producing a 
narrative of deep and vaiied interest, the recollection of which will 
hover round the memory like a sweet vision long after we have 
forgotten its details. It is impossible not to admire the versatility 
of the author's fancy, and the ingenuity with which she contrives to 
interlace the joyous and the brilliant with the solemn and the 
severe ; just as, in some beautiful fabric of the loom, the threads of 
gold relieve the dark tissue of silk." — Morning Post. 

"Without instituting any needless comparisons, we venture to 
say that the volumes before us have that sort of interest which an 
authoress like Miss Austen would have attained had she been a 
Cathohc. . . . There is a resemblance in the minute and exact 
observation of life and manners, and of all the little conspiracies of 
the drawing-room ; a resemblance, too, in the ordinary description 
of ordinary people ; but a difference in the perception that, not 
seldom, but rather within the sphere of each soul under probation, 
some gentler and nobler beings do occasionally come and exert an 
important agency. A difference, too, there is in the law that governs 
the mind of the authoress — a law that will not allow her to con- 
template life and the world merely as phenomena, but rather to view 
each event as bearing on a great purpose — the formation of character 
and the performance or non-performance of the Divine Will. Lastly, 
the most striking difference of all, and what constitutes the true 
originality of the present novel, is the clear perception at once of the 
distinction and of the co-existence of the lower life and the higher life, 
the natural and the supernatural." — Tablet. 

" This story will attract more attention than many a one narrating 
events of far more singular character. . . . The writer is minutely 
intimate with the tenets and doctrines of his religion, and explains 
them most lucidly. For the general reader he possesses other 
attractions. He writes well, and his knowledge of the human heart, 
and of the pritna mohilia of society, is varied, extensive, and pro- 
found." — Observer. 

III. 

WINEFRIDE JONES, the Very Ignorant Girl. 
Cloth. 6d. 
" An extremely interesting little book, of which the leading idea 
is to show how the true essence of religion lies in personal love of 
Jesus, and, as a natural accompaniment, a love of Mary also. The 
various characters are beautifully drawn, and by a delicate, dis- 
criminating hand." — Rambler. 



Works by the same Author. 



IV. 

THE WITCH OF MELTON HILL. A Tale. 
Cloth. 3s. 

" We have seldom read a better story than this. ... As for 
the raoral and religious tendency of the book, it is excellent. Not a 
page bnt some practical moral inference puts out its head like a 
medicinal berry among the wild flowers of the wood." — Catholic 
Leader (America). 

" A very clever story .... worked out with considerable 
ingenuity, and a rapid succession of events, increasing in interest as 
it proceeds. . . . The progress of the story is throughout made 
to depend upon the practical adoption or reception of certain prin- 
ciples of right and wrong ; so that the poetical justice awarded to 
everybody in the end is not a mere chance consequence of circum- 
stances, but the natural result of their character and conduct. This 
it is which gives their chief value to books of fiction as a means for 
influencing the reader's mind; and this it is which will make the 
' Witch ' a volume fit for general circulation to an extent which can 
be asked for few novels." — Tablet. 



MARGARET DANVERS; or, tlie Bayadere. 
A Novel. Cloth. 5s. 

" The story is not in any sense a ' pious ' stoiy or a theological 
story. It is really a novel, and a very clever one ; reminding us of 
one of Miss Edgeworth's best tales, but with less of that intensified 
wisdom and prudential good sense which is a fault in that lady's 
otherwise brilliant fictions. ' Margaret Danvers ' is, in fact, the best 
thing its author has yet published." — Ramller. 

" Margaret is drawn v^-ith remarkable care and an earnestness 
which merits considerable praise. She is, moreover, the vehicle and 
scapegoat of a principle, and tliroAvn into entangled circumstances, 
the unravebnent of which points a moral and adorns the tale by 
bringing her round to Christianity, as understood and believed in by 
the Romish Church. This seems to be the great aim of the story ; 
and, as any faith must be better than scepticism in the naturally 
loving heart of a woman, the aim is as commendable as its execution 
is admirable. . . . Apart from our positive objection that fiction 
should be twisted into a mere vehicle for diffusing religious dogma in 
any shape or form whatever, we must admit that ' Margaret Danvers ' 
is a well -constructed clever performance, polished in style, and evincing 
considerable tact in the delineation of character." — Standard. 

" The work has a high moral character, displays great knowledge 
of the workings of the human heart, and rare felicity in delineating 
them ; and is one of the best novels of the kind we have. It is 
deeply interesting, and possesses solid merit. We recommend it to 
all our young lady readers." — Brownson's Review. 



Works hy the same Author. 



VI. 

BERTRAND DU GUESCLIN, tlie Hero of Chi- 
valry. Is. 6d. Gilt, 2s. 
" This is one of the prettiest stories which we have come across 
for a long time. It reads like a romance ; and we can hardly believe 
that it is not one. If it all happened to the very letter, then truth 
certainly is more marvellous than fiction ; and Sir Walter Scott wrote 
prose, not poetry ; and his accounts of tournaments and the knights 
and fair dames who figured in them are but a poor cc-»y of the heroic 
reality. ... Of course there is a reverse to this fine picture, 
besides the hero's ugliness ; and this is the best proof of the sub- 
etantial fidelity, after all, of the history." — Rambler. 

VII. 

THE TYROLESE PATRIOTS OF 1809. Cloth. 
4s. 

"A nobler theme never engaged the historian's pen than the 
struggle of which the most important incidents are recorded in the 
volume before us ; a theme so inspiring that no man of taste or feel- 
ing could touch upon it altogether unsuccessfully, but which the 
present author has handled in a manner worthy of the highest praise. 
We augur for this book, as we certainly wish it, a marked success. 
The subject is most interesting, the treatment of it eminently 
skilful. . . . We can the better appreciate the admirable use 
which the author has made of the materials accessible to him, as we 
have reason to know that the original sources of information referring 
to the subject with which he deals are very incomplete and unsatis- 
factory ; and we have no hesitation in saying that there does not 
yet exist, in the German, or any other language, so intelligible, so 
vivid, and so accurate a narrative of the Tyrolese War of Liberation 
as that which is given here. . . . The book before us tells all 
that need be known upon the subject, and tells it well. It is a good 
book : it is a small book : it is a cheap book : and it may be, ought 
to be, and, we hope, will be, in the hands of every schoolboy who 
speaks the language in which it is written." — Weekhj Register. 

" We are glad to have this grand story of Catholicity and liberty 
told by a writer who is so familiar with the history of the chivalry 
of the Church. The narrative is full, spirited, and picturesque ; and 
the materials of the book have evidently been carefully collected and 
scrupulously weighed." — Tablet. 

" If this book were not so excellently put together as it is, we 
should be very glad to recommend it on the ground of the good feel- 
ing which shines through even its title. In an age when nationality 
is turned to unpatriotic uses, it is not unnatural that the Catholic 
reaction should sometimes also assume an unpatriotic hue, and thak 
we should appear to forget that patriotism is among the Christian 
virtues. ... No people have exhibited it more nobly, or under 
circumstances more trying, than the Tyrolese. They are a primitive 
people even now, though tew are living who can remember the great 
war of which this is the best English narrative." — Rambler. 



UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS-URBANA 



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